Freedom Leisure has been awarded a 10-year contract by Stafford County Borough Council to manage a portfolio of facilities which include a Victorian theatre, a smaller studio theatre, an Elizabethan town house, a castle and visitor centre, three leisure centres and a sports stadium.

The not-for-profit leisure trust, which manages leisure and cultural facilities on behalf of 22 partners across England and Wales, approached Awen for tactical support with the Gatehouse Theatre, the Ancient High House, Stafford Castle which includes the annual Shakespeare at the Castle production.

Awen will be provide sector specific support on ticketing, marketing, cultural event programming, income generation and fundraising.
Richard Hughes, Chief Executive of Awen Cultural Trust, the charity which also manages a range of cultural services and facilities on behalf of Bridgend County Borough Council, said:

“At Awen we have a wealth of experience in running successful arts and cultural venues, which we are excited to be sharing with Freedom Leisure and the staff working at the cultural and heritage venues they are now operating in Stafford. We are looking forward to offering our knowledge and ideas to support Freedom in their ambitious plans to see the cultural offer in Stafford go from strength to strength.”

Ivan Horsfall-Turner, Freedom Leisure’s Managing Director, added:
“We are delighted to be working in partnership with Awen Cultural Trust as they support the existing workforce within the Stafford borough venues to build upon the current high-quality services and facilities, and ensure local people continue to enjoy the rich cultural heritage in the area in the best way possible.”

Pictured: Ceri Evans, Director of Business Development at Awen Cultural Trust; Richard Hughes, Chief Executive of Awen Cultural Trust; Ivan Horsfall Turner, Managing Director of Freedom Leisure; Jeremy Rowe, Head of Operations Wales and West at Freedom Leisure; Geoff Beadle, Area Manager Stafford and Lichfield at Freedom Leisure.