Theatre project on cultural register

Bernard Shea, Frankie J Holden and John Beever outside Twyford Hall happy to see the Twyford Project Building Fund receive Deductible Gift Recipient status.
Bernard Shea, Frankie J Holden and John Beever outside Twyford Hall happy to see the Twyford Project Building Fund receive Deductible Gift Recipient status.

It’s been four years in the making but the team behind the Twyford theatre project have ticked another important box with the award of Deductible Gift Recipient status from the federal government.

A letter to Twyford Hall committee Public Officer Bernard Shea, from the Department of Communications and Arts states that Twyford Hall Inc has been approved to be entered on the Register of Cultural Organisations with the organisation’s public fund, Twyford Hall Incorporated Theatre Project Building Fund, now eligible to receive tax deductible donations.   

The announcement means businesses and individuals will be able to receive a tax deduction for any donations made to the fund. It is good news for the individuals who together have pledged almost $40,000 to buy seats at $1000 each and opens the door for corporate donations.

In May this year, member for Bega Andrew Constance announced $7.4m in arts infrastructure funding to build a 200-seat raked theatre.

Theatre ambassador Frankie J Holden said the funding was for “the bricks and mortar” but there would be costs in advance of the theatre opening.

The committee is currently waiting for the official paperwork on the funding which will include a funding agreement. John Beever who worked on the funding application said the committee hoped to have the paperwork by the end of December. An invitation to tender for the project would follow early in 2019 with contract award around Easter, Mr Beever indicated.

Given the passage of time since the original business case and costings were developed the committee members acknowledged that a funding gap can be a concern although Mr Beever said there were contingencies in the costings.

“When work starts the existing hall will continue to operate with minor changes to the stage and supper room,” Mr Beever said.

“The shops will not be affected and the work will be done in two stages, first the demolition and reconstruction of the building and then the internal work will be done as stage two,” he said.

“Last month we submitted a funding application to the Building Better Regions Round 3 Commonwealth fund. The application is for $1.27m to be used to upgrade the existing hall including painting, renovating, lighting, and air conditioning. It will transform the hall and bring it to the same level as the new theatre.

“The result will be a $10m arts complex. This will be a real asset in the centre of Merimbula,” Mr Beever said.

Please contact Twyford Hall Inc treasurer Lucas Scarpin at lscarpin@kategic.com.au for information about donating and deductible gift recipient status.

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