Neath Little Theatre
Located in a residential area of Neath on a triangular site at the junction of two major roads and set back from the road leaving a lawned garden area to the front and a small surface car park to one long side. The building is partially obscured from view because of a mature site perimeter hedge and tall trees.
The theatre building is a simple single storey construction with pebble dash rendered panels between exposed concrete framing members to the original building and colour matching facing brickwork to more recent single storey extensions. The main hall has a pitched concrete interlocking tile roof, the extension to the front has a flat roof.
The main entrance is axial on the building and contained in an extension built in 2000 with grant aid from the Big Lottery fund. The extension contains a modest foyer/entrance hall, audience toilets (including provision for disabled visitors) and a management office/box office. There is a ramped approach to the entrance from the adjacent road and car parking area. The foyer space walls are hung with company memorabilia and show posters and give the sense of a well established and confident company.
Entry is directly into the auditorium on the long axis. The auditorium is largely flat floored but there are 4 rows of seats at the rear set on shallow stepped units. There is a small balcony accessed from the rear of the auditorium and containing about 30 fixed seats and a small but well-equipped sound and lighting control room. The seats to the flat floored area of the auditorium are relocated in blocks of 5 giving the company the flexibility of staging shows in the round or in thrust configuration. It is a very intimate room.
The audience seats were rescued from the Gnoll Cinema in Neath at the time of construction of the Little Theatre and give a sense of heritage and create a real ‘theatre’ environment in a way more contemporary loose seats could never do.
The auditorium itself is a plain space with no distinguishing architectural treatment or features and the ceiling follows the pitch of the underside of the roof. The original sprung timber floor is waxed every year and is wearing extremely well.
There is a good sized raised stage with proscenium but no flytower and minimal rigging and suspension bars. Storage is at a premium in the building and the entire area under the stage is given over to this purpose along with a props store and scene dock at the side and rear of the stage area.
There is a single but very large dressing room just behind stage that is split into male and female sections by a simple curtain when needed.
- 1955 : Theatre, continuing
- 1955 Design/Construction: Neath Little Theatre moved into its bespoke headquarters theatre on 19 FebruaryDoug Bailey Borough Engineer (Neath)- Engineer
- 1955 Owner/Management: Neath Little Theatre, owner/manager, continuing
- 1955 Use: Theatre, continuing
- 1960 Alteration: Extension to side and rear of auditorium
- 2000 Alteration: Extension to front and major front-of-house refurbishment funded by a Big Lottery grant
- CapacityCurrentDescription250CommentCapacity reduced in 2009
- ListingNot listed