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Announcing our new creative home

Leamington Spa Town Hall will be our new creation and rehearsal space

2nd October 2020

We’ve got some very exciting news to share today.

We’ve just announced with Warwick District Council that we’re making our new home in the heart of Leamington Spa, leasing the Assembly Hall within the historic Town Hall building.

Louise Richards, Executive Director of Motionhouse: “We are delighted to be moving into the Town Hall and to be part of the vision to make the building a creative focal point as part of the new Creative Framework and the planned Creative Quarter. The Assembly Hall provides the perfect space to create our work in to take to audiences across the world. But importantly, the space has the major advantage of bringing us into the town – it is a place where we can share our work and our creativity with local people.”

Councillor Moira-Ann Grainger, Portfolio Holder for Culture, Warwick District Council: “Being able to bring a world renowned dance company into the heart of the town is a great opportunity, resonating perfectly with the district’s newly launched Creative Compact and the development of the Creative Quarter in Leamington Spa. Bringing creative businesses into the town centre is at the heart of our vision to be a driving force for culture in the Midlands and we hope that such a well-known name will help attract other creative businesses. To be able to see the company working is going to be a fantastic opportunity for residents – particularly young people.”

To make our dance-circus productions that tour the UK and the world, we need a large space with high ceilings, and the Assembly Hall, accommodates these requirements perfectly.

We secured capital investment from Arts Council England to create a fully equipped creative development studio within our previous rehearsal space at the Vitsœ site in Leamington Spa. The equipment has moved with us, offering an exceptional opportunity to develop a new creative space in the town centre. Importantly, the installation is free-standing and does not impact the fabric of this Grade II listed building, blending cutting edge technology with iconic Victorian architecture.

Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England: “We wish Motionhouse every success as they move into their new space, and look forward to seeing them continue to make innovative and exciting work in the heart of Leamington.

“Creativity has the power to bring people together, to connect communities and make the places we live vibrant and exciting – even during lockdown restrictions. Having an international dance company like Motionhouse is a great asset to the town, and with their rehearsal equipment installed in a new space, it’s a great opportunity for even more local people to experience world-class dance and creativity right on their doorstep.”

David Guilding, Arts Manager, Warwick District Council: “We see this as a truly innovative, ground-breaking collaboration which demonstrates the commitment of Warwick District Council to supporting the recovery of the creative industries during this most challenging of times. It also recognises the important contribution that the creative sector makes to our district. It makes excellent use of the Assembly Hall, benefitting the town’s residents by offering a welcoming, world class creative space at the heart of the town and an opportunity for residents from across the district to benefit through regular access to Motionhouse’s programme, insights into the creative process, showings of work, training and education opportunities.”

Watch this short video to find out more about it and to get a first glimpse of the space!

The move was also welcomed by Stephanie Kerr, Executive Director of BID Leamington: “The creation of a rehearsal space for Motionhouse in the Town Hall is exciting. As well as bringing economic benefits from having dancers and staff working in and visiting the town, it breathes creative energy into this beautiful property. Taking on a space in the Town Hall, may also encourage other creative companies to consider working in the heart of the town. Importantly, it also demonstrates that Leamington is a town that supports and values creativity and understands the positive role that the creative industries play in people’s lives”.

Mayor of Royal Leamington Spa, Councillor Susan Rasmussen said: “When I heard Motionhouse was coming to the Town Hall I knew the timing was perfect to make the company one of my Mayoral charities of the year. I hope that by being in the centre of town they will become an even more central part of the cultural life of our town. We are indeed privileged to have outstanding artists living and working in our midst and I want as many people as possible to join me in supporting them this coming year.”

We’re really looking forward to making and rehearsing in our new space!