October 20, 2023
£220,000 Harrison Foundation Grant Transforms Mowden Hall School’s Theatre
Mowden Hall, a rural school nestled in the heart of the Stocksfield community, is set to embark on an exciting transformation thanks to a £220,000 grant from The Harrison Foundation.
The transformation of “The Harrison Theatre” will provide Mowden Hall students and the local community with a versatile space for artistic expression, skill development, and community building. The project includes installing flexible seating, new lighting, and a complete facelift for the theatre, creating an inspiring and multi-purpose venue that will instil pride and confidence in all those who use it.
The school’s theatre will now be officially known as “The Harrison Theatre”. The donation also guarantees that the newly renovated theatre will be used to promote social mobility amongst the wider community.
Drama plays a crucial role in building confidence, empathy, concentration, teamwork, and communication skills in children. Activities offered to local youngsters as part of the donation will aim to promote public speaking and confidence, as well as providing opportunities for more technically inclined children to use state-of-the-art lighting and sound equipment.
Speaking about the project’s broader goals, Daniel Harrison, a trustee of The Harrison Foundation, commented, “We are delighted to make this donation to support Mowden Hall and the wider community. My family has an incredibly strong connection to both as many of us have studied there, including my nephews and nieces, and I look forward to watching them and future generations perform in the Harrison Theatre over the years to come.
“Boosting social mobility is at the heart of the mission of the Harrison Foundation which is why it is so important that this investment helps as many children in our local communities as possible, instilling the same sense of confidence and purpose in young people that I know Mowden Hall School provides for its students through the creative arts. “
Kate Martin, the Headteacher of Mowden Hall School, expressed her gratitude, saying, “The transformation of the Mowden Hall Theatre will revolutionise the way we deliver the Arts, maintain and strengthen our sense of community and very importantly allow Mowden Hall School to further collaborate with local communities. The Theatre has always been the Heart of the School, and was identified early on in the School Improvement Plan as a number one priority. It is a facility that is central to our aim of building the confidence of our pupils. We are delighted and hugely grateful to the Harrison Foundation for enabling this schedule of work to happen. The Harrison Theatre marks a new chapter in the development of Mowden Hall School. We very much look forward to embedding the new Theatre in the local community.”