Sir Michael Parkinson has backed a £5 million fundraising campaign to renovate his local theatre.
The chat show host, who was born and raised in Barnsley, is a patron of the town’s theatre The Civic and and is calling for donations to help make it a world-class destination for the arts by 2023.
He said: “The arts are an integral part of what it means to be human. They contribute to our spirit and enrich our lives. Barnsley can be proud of the contribution it has made to the world of literature, theatre, radio, television, music and sport. That is why this campaign is important and why I am proud to be a patron of The Civic. Please support us.”
The Grade II listed building has been part of the town since 1877. A modern extension was opened in 2009, but a third of the historic building is unoccupied and its traditional front entrance and foyer is disconnected from the rest of the building.
Helen Ball, chief executive of the theatre, said: “The Civic represents the heart of Barnsley. Our vision is to reinstate the historic main entrance and re-connect it to the town and its people, returning The Civic to its rightful former glory.
“It’s about giving The Civic back to the people, and ensuring Barnsley’s future as a significant cultural destination.”