LEEDS Grand Theatre, Leeds City Varieties Music Hall and Hyde Park Picture House are closing from today “to help slow the spread of Coronavirus”.
The decision was taken with regret following official government advice issued on Monday, stipulating that people should avoid public buildings, including theatres.
The three venues under the Leeds Grand Theatre and Opera House Ltd umbrella will “remain closed until further notice and will re-open as soon as possible – following government recommendations”.
Chief executive Chris Blythe said: “We are extremely grateful to all of our audiences who have continued to support us for as long as they can, and to our staff who have worked tirelessly in recent weeks to ensure the safety and enjoyment of audiences.
“These are unprecedented times – combined we have been open for over 400 years – and closing our venues is not a decision that has been taken lightly. In truth, this will have a severe impact on the future of Leeds Grand Theatre & Opera House Ltd. Our future is now uncertain, but the safety of our visitors and staff has always been our priority.”
Mr Blythe went on: “We will continue to follow advice from the Government and work closely with the touring companies and artists that are due to visit our venues over the coming months and hope that we will be able to open our doors again very soon. We thank everyone for their continued support and loyalty.”
Audience members for a performance/screening that has been cancelled will be contacted in due course by staff. “All customers are entitled to a refund, but as Leeds Grand Theatre and Opera House Ltd is a charitable enterprise, those who can afford to are encouraged to donate the cost of their ticket to show support for the future of our venues,” today’s statement said.
“Over the coming weeks, we will continue to provide regular updates. Ticket holders are asked to bear in mind that our customer service teams are extremely busy, and we would appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding at this time.”