The Board and staff of the Maltings (Berwick) Trust are all delighted that funding for a new multi-million-pound arts venue for Berwick was confirmed in March 2021 after the signing of the government’s Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal.
Northumberland County Council (NCC) own the venue and are leading the building project. We’ve been working very closely with them over the last two years on our plans for change. Much of the focus has been on establishing temporary venues at Berwick Barracks that we can use during the building work, but now our focus is shifting to Eastern Lane as NCC appointed an architect to design the new venue at the start of 2023.
The new building will replace our existing venue in the centre of Berwick, mindful of the site’s heritage location and capitalising on an expanded footprint for the building and panoramic views across the 17th century old Berwick Bridge and the Tweed Estuary.
We know how loved our current building is, and how hard our community worked to make it happen in 1990. But we’ve been increasingly aware how much the building lags behind in its facilities, its accessibility and its green credentials. And we want the very best for Berwick – so the rare opportunity to secure a new build in the current climate was too special an opportunity to ignore. We’re absolutely committed to ensuring the new venue delivers for everyone in Berwick, and the surrounding area – and we look forward to working from a range of temporary homes to maintain a film and live events programme alongside our gallery spaces during the development period.
The venue will be a flagship cultural centre when we open the doors in 2026, able to provide a full-time year-round cinema programme alongside an expanded range of daytime and evening performances, event broadcasts, community activities, workshops, and events for children and young people.
It will house :
- a new theatre with extra seats and a bigger stage, allowing us to host larger touring productions and higher profile live performances across theatre, music, comedy, and dance
- two dedicated cinema spaces that allow us to run live events and cinema screenings simultaneously
- a destination restaurant and bar
- a studio theatre
- flexible-use education, event, screening and rehearsal spaces as well as technical facilities for sound recording, filming and streaming.
All our project partners are committed to ensuring we deliver a major asset for the town centre – attracting residents and visitors of all ages, boosting footfall and spend, and enhancing Berwick’s credentials as a must-visit destination.
All our project partners are committed to ensuring we deliver a major asset for the town – attracting visitors and residents of all ages, boosting footfall and spend in the town centre, and enhancing awareness of Berwick as a must-visit destination.