Horsham theatre’s café to be run in-house

JPCT-09-08-11 SC11321019a Horsham Society's design awards. The Capitol - photo by steve cobb
JPCT-09-08-11 SC11321019a Horsham Society's design awards. The Capitol - photo by steve cobb

Horsham District Council hopes to boost the annual income from The Capitol theatre by almost £50,000 by running its café and bar in-house.

Since the theatre underwent a major refurbishment in 2002, the catering has been outsourced, first to DC Leisure and then to Adele and Adele Ltd, the latter of which also has the contract to run The Conservatory, in Horsham Park.

The net income from The Capitol’s café and bar over the last five years has ranged from £21,000 to £24,000 while the expected income from running them in-house is £72,000.

At a meeting of the full council on Wednesday (October 16), deputy leader Jonathan Chowen said a six-month trial period of running things in-house had proved ‘very successful’.

He added: “Not only have we offered a better service, we feel, to our customers, and a much more enjoyable experience, but it’s also had a significant effect on the bottom line.”

A report to the meeting said the trial period had so far brought in £16,100, which was in line with projections.

Members agreed to continue running things in-house, with Roger Noel (Con, Bramber, Upper Beeding & Woodmancote) adding: “It’s obvious from the figures that it’s just a no brainer.”