The Executive has agreed funding of £50,000 to carry out a feasibility study in connection with transforming Fareham's cultural facilities.
Executive Member for Leisure and Community Cllr Sue Bell explains: "The facilities under review are Westbury Manor Museum and Ferneham Hall, both of which are owned by Fareham Borough Council, and the Ashcroft Arts Centre which is owned by Hampshire County Council.
"We have a vision to transform Fareham's cultural facilities and are now ready to proceed with a feasibility study. This will look at how the existing buildings can be redesigned to ensure they meet the needs of the community moving forward. There will also be consideration of the business case to ensure that any re-design of the facilities provides a service that is financially viable."
The vision, which has been developed by the new Hampshire Cultural Trust and Fareham Borough Council, is underpinned by a focus on:
To deliver this vision the proposal is Ferneham Hall and Ashcroft Arts Centre arts and entertainment functions will be brought together to create a programme of arts and culture that brings excellence to the local community.
Ferneham Hall will be redesigned by a local architect to support the delivery of an exciting high quality performance arts programme and will feature new studio and workshop space, café, bar, and box office.
The second element will be for Westbury Manor Museum to be reinvented as a vibrant 'culture stop' in the high street. It will feature pop-up exhibitions and events, offer a great café experience and include a retail outlet where customers can buy quality produce made in Hampshire.
The feasibility exercise is due to be complete by end October 2015. To read a copy of the report presented to the Executive in full, visit www.fareham.gov.uk and click the letter 'M' (for meetings) on the 'A to Z' at the top of the home page, then click on the date of the meeting, 18 May 2015. All documents associated with that meeting will be available to view.
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