The New Vic Theatre in Newcastle-under-Lyme is to begin work on transforming its auditorium, in what is described as the theatre's biggest redevelopment project since it opened 34 years ago.

An artist’s impression of the newly refurbished auditorium has been released today (23 June) to give an indication to audiences of what the theatre will look like following the work.

Refurbishment works will see the theatre replace all of its 597 seats with ergonomically designed seating and a number of two-person seats in certain spaces.

There will also be a redesign of the theatre's balcony area to increase comfort and improve the audience experience. Handholds will be installed to the end of aisles and there will be an increase in the number of spaces available for wheelchair users. 

The theatre will also install a brand new stage and improve aisle lighting, to help audience members access their seats with ease. Works also include upgrading the theatre’s customer toilets.

The redevelopment project sees an investment of over £750,000 into the theatre following major support from Arts Council England.

The Stoke-on-Trent-based Denise Coates Foundation has also made a significant donation towards the works. The Foundation has supported previous redevelopment projects at the theatre, as well as contributing significant funds to the venue’s Borderlines community programme, to support ongoing work with disadvantaged and vulnerable young people.

The New Vic is currently closed, in line with government guidelines.

Local people can support the New Vic’s work by donating to the theatre through its website, at newvictheatre.org.ukor by calling the box office on 01782 717962.