Famous Chesterfield music venue given vital funding to recover from pandemic
Bosses at a famous Chesterfield live music venue say they will ‘make every penny count’ after being awarded Government cash to keep operating.
Real Time Live has been given £27,500 from the £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund to help it recover and reopen when coronavirus restrictions are eased.
Joint owner Niki Stephenson said last summer that there were ‘tears of joy’ among staff, freelancers and musicians when the first round of funding was secured – and they once again feel ‘extremely fortunate’.
Niki, who runs the business with her husband Mark, said: “It is very unfortunate that not all venues have received funding, we consider ourselves to be extremely fortunate, and we shall make every penny count.
"We cannot wait to open the doors again, Real Time Music Shop and Real Time School of Music will be opening again in April, Real Time Live is aiming to open in May in line with the Government’s roadmap.
"Once we have an understanding of the Government protocols, we will be able to inform everyone the new rules we will be working with.”
Niki told us last month that the family-run business feels in ‘limbo’ and ‘no man’s land’ about how they will emerge from lockdown.
Real Time Live hopes to reopen for gigs in the summer – but is still waiting to discover how this will happen.
Niki says the delay is ‘frustrating’ because it is so difficult to plan ahead – and she knows people are enthusiastic about returning to see live music again.
The Real Time brand started in Chesterfield in 1994, developing from a small shop on Newbold Road to its current home on Marsden Street which houses Real Time’s Music Shop, School of Music and Real Time Live, the live music venue.
More than £300 million has been awarded to thousands of cultural organisations across the country in the latest round of support from the Culture Recovery Fund.
Culture secretary Oliver Dowden said: “Our record-breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they've ever faced.
"Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead."