The Renovation Project

The Renovation Project

Background Information

The SandPit Theatre is a 268 seat arts venue based on the campus of Sandringham School. Since the Theatre’s opening fifteen years ago, we have endeavoured to provide a cultural hub for the whole community of St. Albans and further districts. To do so, we programme a wide range of events, including numerous school performances, and external hires including, but not limited to, educational lectures, football club presentations, pottery open days and amateur dance and drama company showcases.

The SandPit Theatre has opened itself up as a venue to other educational organisations and establishments to develop their enrichment opportunities for students. Rather than students having to go into London they can now see relevant performances within a local venue with the added extras of Q&A sessions or workshops with the companies. The SandPit also now has an established programme of events for primary students, Little Diggers, aimed at promoting engagement with the arts.

In addition, we have a focus on educating the next generation of theatre workers, training our volunteers in front of house and technical theatre skills, with the opportunity to rig and design the lighting and sound for many of our productions. Overall, we aim to engage all of our community in the arts and culture by providing an accessible, affordable and welcoming venue.

Despite government funding being cut year on year, the venue has continued to thrive. However, after 15 years the theatre is in desperate need of an update, both in terms of aesthetics and infrastructure in order to continue to provide outstanding facilities for those onstage, backstage and our audiences. Therefore, we have launched a fundraising campaign to support the much needed renovations that the venue requires.

2011 – 2015 Improvements:

  • Improved lighting grid installation; including a part motorised winch system
  • Partial upgrade of sound and lighting equipment
  • Improvements to the performance space; new masking, additional booms, new dance floor
  • Foyer Refurbishment
  • Café and Bar refit

  • Aims of the Project

  • Ensuring the infrastructure of the theatre is a reflection of Sandringham School’s visually striking appearance and it is a venue that the community can be proud of.
  • The equipment available is industry standard to allow the venue to develop as a training facility of excellence for the next generation of theatre technicians

  • What do we have planned?

    The project will run over 5 years from 2016 – 2021, the 20th anniversary of the venue. It aims to improve the experience of all people who come into contact with the venue; whether you are a client, an audience member, a performer or simply someone browsing our website. We aim to provide a high quality of service no matter what your role.

    This Autumn will see the launch of our new website and booking systems making it effortlessly easy to purchase tickets for productions as well as how to find out a little bit more about us as venue. We would love to hear your thoughts so please do get in contact. Also this term, we hope to be installing an air conditioning system into the venue, particularly the main auditorium to improve the comfort of both performers and audiences in those hot summer months.

    Summer 2017 we will aim to refurbish the auditorium space including a full redecoration and replacement of all soft masking. We will also be placing funding bids to hopefully secure the funds to lay a permenantly sprung floor across the entire room. The final stage of the project will see a complete upgrade of the venues technical installations including a full paging, communication and relay system throughout the building.

    Sponsor a Seat Campaign

    In 2018 Sandringham School will celebrate its 30th anniversary. To mark this occasion The SandPit Theatre is looking to replace its current seating bank with a retractable allocated seating system. This will not only allow people to select their seats online when booking tickets but also open up the space for a much larger variety of events. To do this we are launching a 2 year fundraising campaign ‘Sponsor a seat f the renovation project.

    Please see our dedicated page for more information on this.