The British National Lottery and The New Forest Arts Scene

The UK lottery draws funds for arts projects across the country. The New Forest, in southern Hampshire, is one area that currently benefits from the British National Lottery’s generosity.

Forest Forge Theatre Company has existed for over 30 years. The Forest Forge Theatre Company is based in Ringwood, Hampshire. It has at least three productions per year and can be found in many villages, art centres, schools, and theatres around the area.

Producers of the plays featured encourage not only established playwrights but also new and emerging playwrights. Live Draw Singapore

The team will present a special production in January 2012 of E. Nesbit’s novel, the Phoenix and the Carpet. The audience will include disabled children and their families.

The British National Lottery awarded PS80,000 to Forest Forge Theatre Company for their Bloom Project grant at the end of November 2011. The company will travel around Hampshire to seven different venues, and this will be done later in the year. Each team will spend a week at each location, presenting short scenes and events in public spaces. Then they will create a new play for the project. DinosAristidou will write the play that closes each event funded by the British National Lottery. It will feature a gardening theme.

More than 1000 people from local community groups will be involved in the events. Kirstie Davis, the company’s spokesperson, explains how 42 community groups will be working with professional actors. “The overarching theme is 100 Years of Gardening, so be on the lookout for garden gnomes or enormous plants appearing at a location near you!”

British National Lottery funds also provided assistance to a venue that is regularly used by local theatre groups.

From Saxon times, the first records of Hangar Farm, Totton at the New Forest’s edge, are available. It is possible that the site was in use prior to this time. The site was continuously occupied up until the 1950’s. The two hundred-year-old buildings have fallen into ruin over the years.

Although it was initially feared that the site would be lost to the ever-expanding housing estates to its south, Totton and Eling Town Council in 2003 came up with an idea to use the farm buildings for an arts center. Local college was involved and offered to manage the site.

Although Hampshire County Council and New Forest District Council provided welcome contributions, the final amount was still PS230,000 short.

A request was made to the UK lottery for money.

The Heritage Lottery Fund provided the funding needed to begin the restoration of the buildings. In July 2006, the facilities were opened for public use. The Hangar Farm Arts Centre now includes a converted barn that can be used as a 140-200 seat theatre, rehearsal room, and a gallery to host exhibitions by local artists.

The UK lottery draw funding was used to convert the buildings. Beautiful timbers were found and left exposed as a dramatic backdrop for the activities taking place inside. Other amateur and professional community groups, as well as Forest Forge Theatre Company, use the facilities. The college occupies the site during weekdays to hold examinations, lessons, and showcase events.

The Arts Centre hosts a wide range of plays, pantomimes and art exhibitions. It also hosts musicians, dancers, comedians, and other farm buildings. Even the original farmhouse was transformed into a beautiful family home.