The Stage is championing the cause of the Arts Depot, threatened with having its council funding removed. The Stage did a feature on this on 6 December. Now Barnet is quite simply, its codeword for bogeyman, stage villain... In an account published on 13 December of a visit made to the theatre, the Stage reports:
“Are you on the nice list or the naughty list?” asks one of Santa’s little helpers as we enter the auditorium.If you, along with the Stage, abhor Barnet council's proposal to cut the Arts Depot's budget, plus a myriad other services that make living in Barnet tolerably pleasant, please come to the lobby outside Hendon Town Hall tonight from 6-7pm.
No prizes for guessing which one Barnet Council heads at the moment after its cheery festive proposal to cut all core funding to the only professional arts venue in the borough.
I must warn you: I very much doubt we will be allowed inside. There is only room for 25 of yer actual residents in the public gallery of the council chamber. I have emailed the council and asked for an overflow room to be opened but I have had no reply, which I shall take as a "no".
So from 7pm, while the Tory - and possibly the Lib Dem - councillors are voting through a cuts budget of £54 million over three years coupled with a half-baked and expensive scheme to privatise large chunks of our public services, we will be obliged to go the Claddagh Ring to eat, drink and listen to free musical entertainment.
We have some tough fights ahead. Let's have fun tonight!