Two weeks ago you will have heard the fabulous news that Rothesay Pavilion had achieved its £14m capital funding target.
There were huge sighs of relief all round at clearing what seemed an almighty hurdle, paving the way for building work to start on site before Christmas 2017.
However, the project isn’t just about the building; it’s about people who have used it over the years and will use it in the future. We were reminded of this in the summer when a gentleman by the name of Alwyn Parker contacted the Pavilion charity office. Al had been a submariner, serving on the Alaricat as a telegraphist and stationed in Rothesay in the early 1950s. At 89, living in Tunbridge Wells, Al’s memories of Rothesay are as vivid as ever, and of the Pavilion in particular which he describes as ‘like a magnet to the sailors’. He contacted us to share his story of why the Pavilion has a special place in his heart.
Al told us: “My first view of Rothesay was from the conning tower of a submarine. It was summer of 1952. Our boat was joining the 3rd S/M Flotilla and as we were tying up alongside the Montclare I noticed what an attractive seafront it had. The most attractive building was an Art Deco one with the word PAVILION on the front of it. I was destined to spend many happy times there!”
If you would like to read Al’s memoir in full please visit the Rothesay Pavilion website where we have added it to our ‘Pavilion People’ page along with his photos. We hope his story will be the first of many, so if you have any memories or photos of the Pavilion that you would be happy to share, we would love to hear from you and to post them on our website with your permission.
Al also kindly made a donation to the restoration and we are delighted to add his name to our list of individual donors and supporters. While the main ’capital’ funds have been achieved so that building works can start, Rothesay Pavilion charity wants to make the project even better. We have set ourselves a target of raising £400,000 to help – paying for equipment, furnishings, activities and events both during the closure and for the reopening. To this end there will be various events and activities happening over the coming months, and we have also added a ‘donate’ button on the charity website (rothesaypavilion.co.uk/supportus/) to enable credit card contributions. Alternatively, donations can be made by cheque, payable to ‘Rothesay Pavilion’ and posted to the Rothesay Pavilion Project Office, 4 Barone Road, Rothesay PA20 0DP. If you are a UK taxpayer, you can Gift Aid your donation too which adds 25% to its value. So if you donate £10 to the Pavilion, we can claim an additional £2.50 towards the restoration project at no extra cost to you. Every donation, however big or small, will be acknowledged and your name will be added to the list of supporters that are making this amazing project happen.
Finally, for a last chance to see behind the scenes at Rothesay Pavilion before building works start, there is a tour scheduled for November 15 at 10.30am. Places are limited due to health and safety so advance booking is essential. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01700 503734 (Option 4) to book a place. If you can’t make it onto the tour, don’t worry, we will attempt to film it over the next few weeks and will share it on the Rothesay Pavilion website for everyone to see.