Page last updated at 06:26 GMT, Wednesday, 20 August 2008 07:26 UK

Theatre's 25.5m revamp approved

Image showing the planned front approach to the theatre
The refurbished venue will have a 1,200-seat auditorium

The 25.5m redevelopment of a theatre in Canterbury has been granted planning permission by the city council.

The development control committee approved the plans for a 1,200-seat auditorium at the Marlowe Theatre and a second 150-seat performance space.

Landscaping of the complex, on the site of the old theatre and The Friars Motor Company next door, was also approved.

Actor Orlando Bloom, who appeared at the theatre early on in his career, is a patron of the theatre.

Others include fellow actor Joanna Lumley and musician and TV presenter Jools Holland.

The majority of the funding is coming from Canterbury City Council, Kent County Council, and the South East England Development Agency.

But it is hoped 6m will be raised from private donates over the next three years.

After receiving permission on Tuesday night, the Marlowe is scheduled to close early next year and to reopen in early 2011.




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