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Leith: Curtain set to rise again on former theatre

posted 1 Dec 2008, 07:29 by myEdinburgh Admin   [ updated 1 Dec 2008, 07:38 ]
A former theatre that has stood empty for 25 years is in line to be reopened – despite the shelving of ambitious plans for its future.

Hopes of extending the Leith Theatre – to include apartments – have been ditched, but developers are still keen to reopen the building for community use.

Ann MacDonald, former chairwoman of the trust in charge of the landmark, said: "We have come up with a more workable proposal. Our original aspirational master plan created a multi-purpose community arts centre. This would have meant the use of two adjacent sites for extensions.

"However, we recognised that we would have difficulty in persuading the local community to lose open space and that we lack expertise in land development, As a result, we are looking now only at the building itself."

The trust intends to work with the Cockburn Conservation Trust to make the building wind and water-tight – essentially a more simple restoration project.

Groups that have expressed an interest in using the former theatre include Leith Festival, Telford College and Leith School of Art. The council has welcomed the idea and a business plan is expected to be delivered to officers by next summer.

Source: Edinburgh Evening News