Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre: 1974

This page contains a more detailed guide to significant events concerning Scarborough's Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre in 1974.

For details of the schedule and company for 1974, visit the
1974 Details page.


  • 21 January: Hull Arts Centre tours Colin Welland's Say Goodnight To Grandma to Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre for two nights.
  • Responsibility for Scarborough Library is moved to the county council rather than the town council; this will lead to considerable issues regarding the future of the company and Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre.
  • The Arts Council Of Great Britain increases its grant to Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre to £16,500 (including a £2,000 guarantee against loss) to cover the summer and newly launched winter seasons.
  • 17 June: The summer season opens with the world premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's Absent Friends.
  • 26 September: Scarborough Theatre Trust informs the Opera House Preservation Society that it is not interested in a proposed amalgamation of resources and companies to purchase the Opera House as the venue is not suitable for the Trust's purposes.
  • 30 September: The first winter season since 1961 is launched at Theatre in the Round at the Library Theatre with the world premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's Confusions.
  • October: The company is loaned the use of a new carpenter's workshop at the Museum of Bygones premises - previously sets had to be built on the roof of Scarborough Library!
  • 9 October: The first tour by the company since 1962 is launched with Alan Ayckbourn's Confusions visiting Hull Arts Centre, Lincoln, Warwick and Ulverstone.
  • November (TBC): Despite the earlier letter, Alan Ayckbourn meets representatives of the Opera House Preservation Society; he reports in frustration the Society does not understand the aims of Scarborough Theatre Trust and the Society are completely different.
  • 12 November: A second local tour with Alan Ayckbourn's Confusions playing weekly in Scarborough, Whitby and Filey until 19 December.
  • 12 November: Scarborough Theatre Trust applies to the Libraries Committee at North Yorkshire County Council for a 40 week season during 1975.
  • 22 November: The application for a 40 week season is turned down by North Yorkshire County Councillor; it is reported opposition has been led by Councillor Erkki Lahteela, who is also the chairman of the Opera House Preservation Society.
  • 25 November: In a full page interview in the Scarborough Evening News, Alan Ayckbourn threatens to quit Scarborough if the 40 week season is not agreed.
  • 26 November: Hull Arts Centre offers itself as a new home for Alan Ayckbourn and the Scarborough company.
  • 26 November: Councillor Lahteela resigns as chairman of the Opera House Preservation Society and makes the extraordinary statement that neither he nor the county council realised just 'how famous Alan Ayckbourn was."
  • 28 November: The Opera House Preservation Society offers Scarborough Theatre Trust use of the Opera House if it meets 50% of the cost of buying the lease; Alan Ayckbourn responds by saying he would be interested if the Opera House was then knocked down and a new theatre built in its place!
  • 8 December: Scarborough Theatre Trust is informed the former St Thomas' Church may be offered as a new home for the theatre; as a result of this plans for The Esplanade site are abandoned.
  • 23 December: World premiere of Janet Dale's The Christmas That Nearly Wasn't. This marks the beginning of regularly scheduled shows for children, which prove to be phenomenally popular over the coming years.
  • The fund for a new building to house the company is reported to now stand at £30,671.
Article by and copyright of Simon Murgatroyd. Please do not reproduce this article without permission of the copyright holder.