SJT extends £1 ticket scheme for YCH residents to cinema
A scheme enabling residents of a Scarborough housing association to see shows at the Stephen Joseph Theatre for just £1 has proved so successful that it’s being extended to include cinema tickets.
For the past two years, many people booking tickets at the SJT have added a £2 donation, and the money has been used to subsidise tickets for residents of Yorkshire Coast Homes to attend the theatre’s productions.
In 2016, 132 residents took advantage of the offer; last year, that figure rose to 667, and with the scheme now covering cinema tickets, YCH anticipates the number being even higher this year.
YCH residents are given a code which allows them to book a £1 ticket for an SJT production – this summer, The 39 Steps, adapted from the book by John Buchan and the film by Alfred Hitchcock by Patrick Barlow, from an original concept by Simon Corble and Nobby Dimon; a revival of Alan Ayckbourn’s Joking Apart and the world premiere of his latest play, Better Off Dead; and a new play by Scarborough-born actor and playwright Christopher York, Build a Rocket.
The new cinema ticket scheme makes £1 tickets available for films (not live streamings). Tickets must be bought on the night of the screening, are not bookable in advance, and limited to two tickets per booking. YCH issues a booking code, but first-time YCH bookers must also bring their rent book on their first visit as proof of residency.
The scheme has proved popular with YCH residents – one, Julia Brierley, who lives in Staithes, says: “If it wasn’t for the combination of YCH and the SJT, we really would miss out on one of the highlights of the year.”
And it has been praised by an academic studying class diversity in British theatre. Chris Haydon, the former Artistic Director of London’s Gate Theatre and now carrying out research as part of a Clore Fellowships, says: “The SJT’s £1 ticket scheme is a brilliantly innovative and simple way of building relationships deep in the local community and ensuring that the theatre is as accessible as possible.”
Laura Young, Yorkshire Coast Homes Community Involvement Officer, says: “The scheme is a great success and means that YCH residents have saved a total of £11,471 in discounts, not to mention the impact on social inclusion and improving accessibility into the arts.”
The theatre runs similar schemes with>the Young Carers’ Resource and the NYCC Prevention Service.
To book for shows at the SJT, please call the box office on 01723 370541 or visit the website: www.sjt.uk.com