New studio at Theatre Royal Wakefield is named after Sir Rodney Walker

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A new drama studio at the city’s Theatre Royal will be named after long-standing supporter Sir Rodney Walker.

The 100-seater venue, part of a £900,000 arts centre being built at the theatre, will be named the Walker Studio.

It will recognise the efforts of Sir Rodney in helping to get the theatre re-opened in the 1980s and financial contributions from him and Lady Anne Walker over the past 30 years.

The studio, where new stand-up comedy, drama and music will be staged, is inside the Centre for Creativity, currently under construction at the theatre on Westgate.

Derelict land next to the theatre will be transformed into a cafe-bar and studio as part of the project, designed to boost audiences and revenue at the 133-year-old theatre.

The project, expected to be open next Spring, includes an eight-metre glass frontage and rusted steel cladding to replace the theatre’s existing hoarding on Westgate.

The theatre launched a Buy a Star fundraising appeal to help pay for interior work at the new facility.

Playwright John Godber, Jason Donovan and Theatre Royal Wakefield’s Chris Hannon have already bought stars to appear on a Wall of Fame.

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