Statement from the Douglas Centre Trust
The unprecedented events following the spread of the virus have left us struggling to keep up with what is possible at the cornerHOUSE. Most of our users have already cancelled activities for the foreseeable future.
As a volunteer-run activity, at the best of times we are dependent on people coming forward to make the place happen. Many of those volunteers fall into the “elderly” classification and some are also scheduled as “vulnerable”. Correctly they are listening to government advice to self-isolate.
Government advice is also for us all to avoid “unnecessary social gatherings”; which may describe just about everything that goes on at the cornerHOUSE ( although we would argue that “art” and “community” are far from being unnecessary.).
So we have taken the difficult decision to close the building for the present. All planned and booked events and activities are cancelled. The Annual General Meeting will still formally take place on April 3rd, although consultations will only be in advance in e-correspondence .
We will keep a shadow diary to preserve timeslots already booked, although this does not mean that those events will necessarily go on when things allow the centre to be re-opened. We are taking no new reservations for the present.
As far as possible we will be keeping alert to changes in the government’s guidance, and also for opportunities identified by existing partners, which may mean that the building can be re-opened for some uses. Currently we have no idea when that might be. We are also looking at ideas which may keep the cornerHOUSE ethos alive on-line
We recognise absolutely the important role that the cornerHOUSE plays in the lives of so many in our community, and the potential that it has to be so in the lives of many more. As soon as we can we aim to get back to offering that role. For now, though, we ask your patience and understanding.
The trustees of the Douglas Centre Trust operating the cornerHOUSE community arts centre