Preston Guild Hall set to entertain new owners

By Dean

02 Jul 2014

An investment of over £1m is set to breathe new life into Preston Guild Hall as a live music and entertainment venue.

Council bosses in Preston are recommending the sale of the Guild Hall and Charter Theatre complex to local businessman, Simon Rigby who runs a range of catering and entertainment businesses including The Villa hotel at Wrea Green.

Simon Rigby said: “Preston Guild Hall is a wonderful opportunity and I am thrilled the Council is set to accept my offer. The building oozes potential. It’s a rough diamond that needs some polishing, but with love, care and attention it will truly sparkle as Lancashire’s premier entertainment venue.

“Obviously, we need to invest in the building and that is exactly what we will do with over £1 million of immediate investment into the Guild Hall. This will transform the Guild Hall into a fabulous live entertainment venue for Preston, which will include community use of the building.

“I’m also keen to support the creation of new businesses in Preston and my vision for the Guild Hall includes providing shops for start-up businesses as well as access to mentoring and business support from my expert team.

The proposal to sell Preston Guild Hall to Simon is to be considered by the Council’s Cabinet on Friday 5 July and should the Council accept the recommendation, work will begin on finalising the transfer of the building to him. It is likely that the sale of the Guild Hall will be completed by October 2014.

"As well as a new restaurant, banqueting and conference facilities, Simon is to improve entertainment at the Guild Hall with a potential tie-up with the Lowry. Simon also wants to set up a trust fund to support the culture and arts in Preston, along with supporting community use and events at the Guild Hall.

“We’ve worked hard over the last few months to deliver a bright future for the Guild Hall and I am sure the Council will agree with the recommendation to sell the Guild Hall to Simon, and look forward to working with him to deliver a fantastic future for entertainment, culture and arts in Preston.”

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