Greenock Arts Guild Ltd. was founded in 1946 as a not for profit company whose aims are to promote and encourage participation in arts activities. The Guild as it is affectionately known purchased a disused private swimming baths and set about converting it to an arts centre which first opened its doors in 1949, with the small, 100 seat, Wallace Bennett Theatre and two meeting rooms.
The main theatre, with 500 seats, opened in 1955 in what has been the swimming pool. The slope of the pool floor made for good audience sightlines when it became the stalls, with the stage being constructed at what had been the “deep end”. In the ’60′s further meeting rooms and a scenery store were added. The 1980′s saw the Wallace Bennett Theatre converted into a flexible studio space.
Having served the community of Inverclyde for over 65 years, the Arts Guild Theatre closed our doors for the last time on Saturday 8th December.
The Guild will then move to its new purpose build home, The Beacon Arts Centre, on Greenock’s waterfront. After nearly 9 years of planning, design, construction and, of course, raising funds, we are almost ready to open the doors of The Beacon and show everyone what we have been so excited about for so long.
On behalf of Greenock Arts Guild, the charity which will continue to own, manage and operate The Beacon, we should like to thank all of our funders, donators, staff and volunteers for helping to make the Beacon a reality and for giving the community of Inverclyde one of the best arts centre’s in the UK.
A warm festive welcome awaits everyone at The Beacon. We look forward to your company in the coming months and years.