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Coronavirus: Stamford Corn Exchange Theatre remains open

A theatre will stay open until the Government forces it to close.

Stamford Corn Exchange Theatre - which runs as a charity - is urging people to stay away from the building to prevent the spread of coronavirus, despite the doors remaining open.

General manager at the Stamford Corn Exchange, Judith Mackie, said: "The announcement Boris Johnson made yesterday has caused great problems as it suggests people shouldn't be going to the theatre but not actually forcing us to close."

Stamford Corn Exchange Theatre
Stamford Corn Exchange Theatre

Contracts signed by the charity mean that it is obliged to allow planned shows to take place, despite the possibility of there not being an audience.

Closing the theatre now could leave Stamford Corn Exchange at risk of legal action being taken against it.

Negotiations are taking place with theatre companies to convince them to reschedule their shows for another time.

Judith said: "Most are being very understanding. The problem is other things that run are in the diary a year in advance.

"Trying to rearrange is difficult in itself."

She added: "We understand that keeping people safe is our core most importance in this situation.

"We don't want to keep running shows but until this enforcement comes in we can't necessarily cancel everything."

If a show is postponed all customers' bookings will be moved to the new date with the same allocated seats.

If a show is cancelled or the customer cannot attend the new date, people should contact the box office for a refund.

Money is also being lost through booking cancellations at the Theatre Lounge, which hosts weddings, christenings and birthday parties.

To help pay staff and keep the building maintained the charity is having to find a new way to raise funds.

It is asking people with cancelled tickets who cannot make another date whether they would like to donate the money rather than have a refund.

Judith said: "If anyone would like to make donations they can make them on the website or by calling us."

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