A COMMUNITY-based theatre group has found a new home at the Maylands Autumn Centre.
Community groups such as the Maylands Ratepayers and Residents Association and World Shotokan Karate-do Federation casually hire the centre, which previously housed a senior group that dissolved 2017.
At last night’s City of Bayswater committee meeting, officers recommended a two-year lease to ECHO Community Services, which committed to funding up to $250,000 for facility upgrades.
However, the council voted 6-2 for Councillor Elli Petersen-Pik’s alternate motion to grant a two-year lease to ARENAarts, which offered artistic rehearsal, performances and workshops.
Cr Brent Fleeton and Deputy Mayor Chris Cornish voted against.
The group will pay $5000 worth of rent each year plus utility charges.
Part of the user agreement includes a requirement for the venue to be made available for other community groups during down periods, subject to the City’s satisfaction.
The group was happy to pay a percentage of facility upgrades including an improved stage area, green room, electrical works and toilets.
Councillor Barry McKenna’s bid for a five-year plus five years lease was lost.
ARENAarts representative Jim Chantry said the group had a history in Maylands and Bayswater.
“It is the wish of ARENAarts to work with the current tenants to ensure we can find common ground and timetables to allow for a shared tenancy so they will not be disadvantaged,” he said.
“This agreement could even extend to the involvement to those groups to co-host charity events during our performances as a fundraising event for their groups.
“Live community theatre offers a diverse spectrum of affordable, family-based entertainment which can extend beyond the physical venue to community festivals.”
Cr Fleeton said while he hoped the centre agreement worked, the ECHO option would have been much better because it followed the City’s processes.
Mayor Dan Bull said the group would add to a fast-developing arts hub in the heart of Maylands.