Leicester theatre goes into liquidation

Published: 23 May 2020
Reporter: Steve Orme

“Disappointing end”: Haymarket Theatre

Leicester’s Haymarket Theatre has become a victim of coronavirus and gone into liquidation—only two years after reopening.

The 1970s theatre closed in 2007 to make way for the £61 million Curve theatre. Ten years later, the city council invested about £3 million installing new seats and fittings. The main auditorium had 901 seats.

A group called the Haymarket Consortium reopened it, with the first production being the 2018 world première of Treasure Island by Sandi Toksvig.

A Haymarket spokesperson said it was “hugely disappointing” that the COVID-19 pandemic had “effectively switched off our income tap. Having not had the time to build the significant reserves required, we are unable to continue.

“We have discussed the possibility of rescue packages with a number of organisations but, with the future so uncertain and given the lack of security and the fragile nature of the business at this still early stage, these have all understandably proved unworkable.”

Leicester's City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said it was a "bitterly disappointing end to what was a brave and exciting venture. I remain confident that there’s still a place for a vibrant Haymarket that will add to the city’s cultural offer in the future.”