The Futurist - Low Hanging Fruit

Benefitz Betty's picture

The Save the Futurist campaign is out on exercise and continues to raise more column inches than Vitruvius. 

As the Futuristas news continues to flow, following a Save the Futurist meeting at YMCA  the further development of a publicity campaign funded by the public to  the tune of £2k, with a future meeting planned for the new year (5th January) some restoration of order is required. 

Calls at the YMCA  meeting that the Council should hand over the keys and the Save The Futurist campaigners could restore the Theatre to its former glory for the princely sum of  £4mil reserved by Council to develop the asset were met with raptuous applause....  especially by a few.

On commenting that the refurbishment of the Futurist would cost closer to £20mil ... fag packet stuff ... with yet another head chewing on the table ... one wonders how thick set you have to be to get elected.  No time for vitriolics.

Of the £4mil to 'develop' the land, as expressed by Council officers many times, including stabilisation works, this £4mil has been translated by the StF's as the cost to redevelop, refurbish and reopen the Futurist.    Any breakdowns of the translated sums can be  found in the StF's most recent business case, ooh argh the three R;s:

Full of theatricals & stuff but the bottom line was the Council would give the StF's the site and 2000 seats would be sold at £2k to raise the £4mil... so by erm, my reckoning that's £8mil ball park.   Add in the design & development changes recently required by StF for feasibility and viability (stage access, frontal robes etc), improvements to air conditioning, heating, IT and utility upgrading, surveys, fees, finance etc etc...  a good guestimate of minimum £20mil I thought well rounded.  With over 4000 FB friends on their website thats about £5k ea. 

Ah, so ... says one of the thick set twin hatted;   "that is just your opinion!!!".  I was tempted to ask how wrong I was?  But declined.  Yawn ... 

OK, so, don't take my word for it; here is one prepared earlier:   Mark Rothbury 9th June 2010 : Mark Rothery presentation 11am.pdf

Option 1 Refurbishment of existing Futurist and
Mermaid buildings:-
2008 Cost: £9.06m
Loss: £9.06m
2010 Cost: £7.7m
Loss: £7.7m

Option 2 Refurbishment of Existing Futurist
Building, Redevelopment of the Mermaid Building
and the Development of Offices or Residential
With Offices:
2008 Cost £27m
2010 Cost £15.5m
Loss: £7.9m
l Development Subsidy Required
l Does not include annual theatre operator subsidy
l Assumption of rental income being £608,873
l No additional building stabilisation or structural works included

Option 3 Cut Cliff Face back to King Street and redevelop a
new theatre including offices or residential dwellings together
with a nightclub, retail and three floors of bars/restaurants.
With Offices:
2008 Cost £54.9m
Loss: £31.4m
2010 Cost £30.8
Loss: £6.1m
l Development subsidy relates only to new theatre element of the Development
l Does not take into account any annual ongoing theatre subsidy to the Development or an
annual rental liability assumed to be £430,604 pa.
l No current market demand for office space

As the future of the Futurist is turning into a political battleground, lets take a rewind to 

"Councillor Mrs Jefferson began by thanking all those local residents who had signed the petition which had to surpass 5000 in number to trigger this debate at full Council.  She also referred to the support for the retention of the Futurist Theatre from the local tourism and hospitality industry, the Theatres Trust, and national media; the theatre’s potential to host lucrative touring shows from the West End which could also involve local young people; the theatre’s capacity to accommodate opera and ballet, and to become a venue for visitors in wet weather.  Councillor Mrs Jefferson maintained that the theatre could become sustainable by the construction of apartments above and around the building, the provision of a bar and restaurant on site, and by establishing an Art, Theatrical and Creative Industries College and venue for the town’s heritage groups.  She saw a restored and adapted theatre within an iconic building housing these other facilities and attractions as a unique opportunity to make the town the envy of every other coastal resort in the country.  Councillor Mrs Jefferson also sought further information on recent bids to take over and run the Futurist Theatre which she understood had been rejected by the Council, and asked how the Council would respond to the restrictive covenant which she understood had been placed on the site by Mr William Catlin.  In conclusion, Councillor Mrs Jefferson requested that the Joint Venture Board consider the requests and proposals detailed within the petition at its next meeting.  Before the Cabinet Member for Tourism and Culture responded, the Leader of the Council, Councillor Fox first provided an update on the matter of the restrictive covenant on the site.  Members were advised that this was not a true restrictive covenant since it related to a concrete slab and not the land itself, and did not restrict the Council’s use of the land conveyed to it.  The clause referred to the consent of Catlins Entertainments Limited which became Futurist Enterprises Limited.  This company was dissolved in 1989.  Assuming that the benefit of the clause had not been assigned in any  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6a   "Councillor Derek Bastiman confirmed that the Council had offered to provide support to the People’s Trust in 2010, but the offer had not been accepted. "

Perhaps £20mil was a tad conservative...

Latest :

Geological Experts?  The Geological Report is part of the package that the developer is paying for but hey ho it is discussed here with Cllr Murphy:

Whine whine...

Confusing?   OK lets introduce Site A :-)  The plans to develop the Futurist were mixed in with the Town Hall with options given : 

20/03/2012:  Town Hall Accommodation - Evaluation of Options.pdf

So, erm add in the £3mil  Council have secured to get to one development site and thats £7mil  of asset to be handed  over before the StF's begin. Ya don't spose ... nah course they wouldn't. SBC have no money. Only other peoples, bit like the StF's really ... except of course the StF's want to install their own regime .. erm, I mean Trust.   Anyhoos a mutual exchange with HCA for site A is more likely than SBC handing out heads on a plate.  

Mind a calculated guess would suggest .... square pegs?   Fact is, until the 'developer', Flamingo Land, puts the proposal on the table to be considered 'tis all goose.

"Vitruvius believed that an architect should focus on three central themes when preparing a design for a building: firmitas (strength), utilitas (functionality), and venustas (beauty)."

Romans eh? ...

"THE foundations of these works should be dug out of the solid ground, if it can be found, and carried down into solid ground as far as the magnitude of the work shall seem to require, and the whole substructure should be as solid as it can possibly be laid. Above ground, let walls be laid under the columns, thicker by one half than the columns are to be, so that the lower may be stronger than the higher. Hence they are called “stereobates”; for they take the load. And the projections of the bases should not extend beyond this solid foundation. The wall-thickness is similarly to be preserved above ground likewise, and the intervals between these walls should be vaulted over, or filled with earth rammed down hard, to keep the walls well apart."



Due Dilligence

Explore. Examine. Engage ... Execute.

F ...




Benefitz Betty's picture

The Futurist - Final?

"6:01am 12th December 2016

The leader of Scarborough Borough Council says the Futurist Theatre building will be demolished.

Councillor Derek Bastiman has told us that those wishing to save it have been given ample opportunity to come up with a business plan, but no such plan has come forward.

He says a meeting in January is simply to discuss the costs of the building's demolition, because it's already been agreed that it will be pulled down.

He also said a petition to save the building was submitted to the council and considered, but rejected.

Councillor Bastiman said:

"The process has been adhered to all the way through, there's an agreement that the Futurist will be demolished, the meeting on the 9th January is to approve a figure for the demolition of the Futurist and the stabalisation of the site."

His comments come as the campaign group 'Save the Futurist' step up their efforts to prevent the building's demolition, including projecting images onto it last Saturday evening.

Earlier this month the group issuing a document stating their aims:

"We wish to see the Futurist fully modernised and beautifully restored as a central part of the tourism and cultural provision for both the town and the wider region.

We also believe that an updated Futurist Theatre, re-fitted as a world class facility, would bring untold economic benefits to each and every resident of Scarborough; theatregoer or not."



Benefitz Betty's picture

Storming Norman

Cllr Norman Murphy  ... an 'echo or 'elaboration? :

"As the Town Hall’s plans to demolish the Futurist Theatre move towards their final conclusion, with the inevitable death sentence possibly being delivered in a no doubt one-sided report to full council in January, it seems odd that a council which thinks it knows the cost of everything, but actually know the value of nothing, should be so keen to spend millions of pounds destroying a valuable asset – when they could spend less money to save it. Indeed even the most ruthless Attila the Hun in the Town Hall must know that as things stand now saving the Futurist is the most financially beneficial option.

Looking back to where we were in 2013, when the first serious moves were made by the council to knock the Futurist down, and where we are now; the situation could not be more different. It is true that in 2013 it was easy for the Town Hall to make the case for demolition. The Town Hall’s finances through local mismanagement and Government cuts were desperate. With regard to theatre provision in the town the Open Air Theatre was a financial car crash, the future of the Spa looked bleak and the operator of the Futurist was clamouring for more council subsidy to keep it open.

The Futurist Theatre was stuck in the vicious circle of lack of investment, going back decades, which had resulted in the fabric of the building literally falling apart. The ever- higher running costs resulting from the outdated facilities within the theatre were adding further financial burdens. Moreover, because the council had failed to buy the property on the Blands Cliff side of the building the access needed to allow props and staging, which big West End touring shows need, could not enter the building thus debarring this lucrative entertainment.

With all these problems it is not difficult to understand that the Futurist was unable to attract big name acts, could not facilitate popular shows and, because it was cold and damp in the winter, even had difficulty attracting customers to block buster films. Therefore with no hope of the Town Hall paying for renovation, no council subsidy, no chance of obtaining the property next door and no one willing to step in and save the old girl, demolition was seen as the only answer to the council’s Futurist problem. However, how things can change.

Not owning the property attached to the theatre on Blands Cliff, the old Mermaid pub as was, was a major stumbling block and ruled out the possibility of staging other profitable big touring shows such as Cats, Lion King and War Horse. However, fortunately this obstacle has now been removed. In 2015 the council bought the property next door, using £500,000 of our money, and so now we own the whole site.

With regard to finding money to renovate the theatre this is now also not a problem. In 2014 the operators of Flamingo Land offered to buy the cleared site for £600,000 to put a ride on it. This idea appealed to the Town Hall and consultants and engineers were hired, at huge cost which has still not been revealed to even councillors, to see if the theatre could be pulled down without bringing down all the property behind it and how much it would cost. Their report on the stability of the ground has not, as yet, been made public and the contents are a highly guarded secret within the Town Hall. However, what we do know is that our finance department, at Cabinet’s request, included in this year’s budget borrowing of £4 million to demolish the Futurist (yes I know borrowing £4 million to get back £600,000 is the economics of the mad house ... but this is Scarborough Borough Council!).

Anyway we now know that £4 million is available exclusively for the Futurist this money can of course be used as the Town Hall wants, which is to demolish the Futurist; but equally it can be used to renovate the Futurist, it is going to be borrowed either way. So where, I hear you ask, does the saving come in? Well as anyone who has done up an old property will know you can spend and spend; renovation has virtually no limit, however, the cost of sorting out the Futurist’s major defects, that is knocking through from Blands Cliff, replacing the roof, removing the 1970s cladding and repairing the facia, installing insulation and a new heating boiler is estimated to be about £3 million, or, in simple terms, about £1 million less than demolition.

However, with regard to finance, doing the renovation does not just save money it also opens the door to new ways of running the theatre and attracting extra money. The establishment of a Futurist Theatre Trust; which several groups would like to create, allows applications to be made to various funding bodies.

We may see that both the financial and structural arguments in favour of demolition are overcome and restoration is perfectly affordable and feasible. However, there are, of course, two further cards the council could play to justify their desire to demolish the Futurist and these are the question of usage and long term viability. The very reason, they argue, that the Futurist must go is that when it was operational too few people were using it. But would this be the case now if the Futurist were renovated?

It cannot have escaped the notice of those in power in the Town Hall that in the last 10 years the popularity of all forms of live entertainment has grown hugely. Towns and cities up and down the country are reaping the rewards of large audiences using their theatres. Venues such as the Spa in Bridlington, theatres in Harrogate, Blackpool, and many other places, are hosting huge concerts, putting on spectacular shows, laughing at hilarious comedians and staging vibrant pantomimes.

While we may be sure of the present day demand for live entertainment the argument of long term sustainability, which the Town Hall will inevitably use as an excuse to demolish the theatre, cannot be answered with such certainty. However, it should be remembered in the corridors of power that once the theatre is transferred to a trust responsibility for the present and future viability of the theatre is no longer the Councils concern. The theatre once restored would be managed independently like the Spa and Open Air Theatre is now; free of Council incompetency.

Furthermore the advance of modern technology, which has made it almost impossible for performers to make a living from studio recording, is not going to go away anytime soon. The public love live performance, and performers love performing, there is therefore every reason to be confident that the long term future of venues like the 
Futurist, should it be saved, is pretty much guaranteed."

Clearly he hasn't parked in King Street lately ...

As the Futuristas pointed out ( all bythemselves)  the demolition and development have to be concurrent ... the £4mil is and has been stated to 'develop' the site not 'demolition' ... with or without the Futurist the stability works have to be carried out.... erm, or no Futurist :-)



Benefitz Betty's picture

Futurist - Look North

"6:03am 21st December 2016

A local scaffolding company has said they will remove the facade on the outside of the Futurist Theatre for free.

Infiniti Scaffolding Limited agreed to carry out the work following a conversation with former Last of the Summer Wine actor Ken Kitson, who is involved with the Assist with the Futurist initiative, part of the Save the Futurist campaign.

The company have said they will carry out the following works free of charge:

  • Erect/Dismantle Scaffolding
  • All lifts to be protected with visqueen for public protection
  • Removal of the facade
  • Harris fencing for protection
  • Skips provided by A Brunton for removal of debris
  • All scaffolding to be erected to TG20 guidelines
  • Provide necessary RAMS to principle contractor should the work go ahead

Should this work go ahead, it would not cost the council any money.

Councillor Norman Murphy is a UKIP representative for the Northstead Ward and he said:

"What Infiniti have agreed to do is remove all the cladding off the futurist theatre, completely take all sign of it off and dispose of all the scrap completely for free.

"They estimate that if it was a job, along with the skip firm, it would be somewhere in the region of £100,000.

"The demolition of the Futurist has never ever come to full Council. The decision Councillor Bastiman is quoting and keeps quoting was a decision by just eight members of the Cabinet a couple of years ago which said they agree 'in principle' to the demolition of the Futurist.

"It was never ratified by all of us at all."


Benefitz Betty's picture

Tale Ends

"The incident happened in the early hours of Wednesday morning during planned maintenance, but no one was injured.

The mines inspectorate is investigating after a tunnel was flooded at Boulby potash mine. The incident happened in the tailings tunnel during planned maintenance.

In a statement ICL UK said: "In the early hours of Wednesday morning, a water ingress has occurred in the tailings tunnel, during a planned maintenance activity to replace two effluent valves.

"The maintenance team working on the valves, exited the tunnel and subsequently rode out as the water flow continued.

"The tailings tunnel has now flooded, and we are monitoring the level in the shaft. A dive team was already on station and will dive to inspect the outfall, once the water levels stabilise.

"Plans are currently being drawn up to recover the situation."

They added: "All mining operations will continue as normal, as will the salt and polyhalite plants, although the potash plant will not operate until an agreed method of effluent disposal is

established. The mines inspector has been informed and we are working closely with them."

The incident happened just weeks after the mine announced plans to apply to keep the site for 40 more years. The current planning permission has been in place since 1998 and expires in 2023.

The mine has had a troubled year - a safety probe was launched in June after a 56-year-old man named John Anderson died at the mine in an incident described as a sudden and powerful release of gas."$sitewide%20p$15

Neighbours eh?

Waves: -/



Captain Black's picture

Fututrist Flirts

"A public meeting's being held tonight by campaigners trying to save Scarborough's Futurist Theatre.

They'll be discussing what to do next in their bid to save the venue - which is earmarked for demolition.

The council meets on Monday to vote on approving 4 million pounds being spent on knocking it down.

The meeting's being held at the YMCA Theatre on St Thomas Street at 7pm.

A spokesperson for the Save the Futurist Campaign Group said:

"As you may well be aware we have applied to become a Charitable Trust and are wanting to run the Futurist as a Community Theatre. There will be a host of information on offer at the meeting that may enlighten you as to who the Friends of The Futurist are, what has been done so far, what the plans are moving forward and how we would like to work with the council to achieve this".

Group Co-Ordinator Patricia David said:

"The anger in this town is really coming ot the surface. We have alot more active activists now, all working towards it and we want to make as much noise as we can.

If the a large majority of the local population don't want what the council is going to do, they have every right to protest. If we go on protesting and they go on ignoring us, I don't know where it's going to end".

Oh.... getting 'Fresh'... hmmm.

Captain Black's picture

Futoutists Flouts

"Flamingo Land has revealed its latest plans for the Futurist site in Scarborough’s South Bay.

The company will find out on Monday whether the plans could become a reality, when councillors vote on the demolition of the historic theatre.

Flamingo Land boss Gordon Gibb said the demolition is “not a foregone conclusion”.

The Conservatives are the biggest party in the 50-member council but are equally matched by the combined number of independents and councillors of other parties.

He said: “If the decision is taken which allows us to develop a new attraction, I hope people can agree to disagree and get behind something positive for the town.

“We have always wanted to do something in Scarborough and this site will give us the best chance of success.”

The plans represent a £20 million investment and the firm is keen to retain elements of the site’s history.

Mr Gibb explained: “Live actors will explain the story of Scarborough and specifically the history of the Futurist and its forerunner which opened back in 1903 called Arcadia, built by Kiralfy when a wooden rollercoaster was the star of the show.”

The ground floor will feature an indoor play area for younger children and on the first floor there will be a 4D interactive dark ride, which will take guests on a simulated journey around the coastline where the emphasis will be on education as well as entertainment.

There will also be a junior mini-coaster and an education centre, with conservation programmes from pre-school to degree level.

The restaurant, looking out onto South Bay, will offer locally-sourced produce and a Scarborough-brewed ale.

A roof garden will feature family activities such as rope courses and crazy golf. It will open in the evening to enjoy it year-round. The outside space will also be home to a walk-through aviary set among landscaped gardens.

The pace then changes dramatically, with the chance for visitors to experience white-knuckle rides including a 55 metre high Shot Tower, with 360 degree views of the seafront and town, a rollercoaster and a zipwire.

Mr Gibb said: “For a privately-owned business this is a substantial investment. It’s a reflection of the company’s appetite to come up with a game-changer for the resort. I hope people will support it.”

Peter Wilkinson, creator of the Scarborough University Technical College to encourage more young people to consider design and engineering for careers, said: “An attraction of the scale being proposed, and investment from a proven theme park operator, is gift-wrapped and it is vital.

“It will ensure Scarborough has a solid future as a visitor destination.

“People have understandable views about the Futurist’s halcyon days, so do I, but we have to think about Scarborough’s future. That is the message that has to come across.”

John W Senior MBE, Chairman of South Bay Traders Association said: "While the SBTA membership were very sad to see the closure of the Futurist as a theatre, we now believe it is the right time to move on and do something positive with this critical and high profile site.

"Mr Gibb’s plans certainly appear imaginative, forward looking and with a seemingly welcome nod to the past. So subject to assurances of a safe demolition and sight of the detailed plans, the SBTA is generally supportive of the development as described and we look forward to exciting times to come and perhaps the dawn of a new era for Scarborough, not just as Britain’s first resort, but also as a truly desirable place to live work and play.”

Council leader Cllr Derek Bastiman added: “Flamingo Land’s plans sound fantastic and are very much aligned with our ambitions for continuing to attract high quality private sector investment that has a positive knock on effect on existing businesses.

“During the many years of debate and decision making about what could be developed on the Futurist site, there has been the wish and demand for a themed attraction to appeal to all the family. The Flamingo Land development fits this bill perfectly and would complement the existing attractions in South Bay and the recent investment in North Bay, including the waterpark and the soon to be developed multiscreen cinema.”

The new Fab Four. 

Rocket science.


Benefitz Betty's picture

RSPB & Folk Lore

"... Chemicals giant Ineos wants to inspect part of the ancient Nottinghamshire forest to see if there is potential for fracking.

"It said it was "exploring the viability" of shale gas across the country and its seismic imaging surveys "do not include fracking in any form".

The RSPB, which will manage the entire Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve from 2018, opposes fracking but does not object to seismic imaging surveys in principle.

The conservation charity said surveys must be done in a way that did not disturb breeding birds...."

"Sherwood Forest originally stretched from Sheffield to Nottingham and was the legendary home of Robin Hood

  • It is now much smaller than it used to be and is separated by roads, towns and farms.
  • Part of the remaining woodland is designated as Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve (NNR), which covers 1,050 acres of land and is owned by Thoresby Estate
  • Sherwood Forest Country Park is a 450-acre country park within this and is managed by Nottinghamshire County Council
  • Thoresby Estate currently leases this land to the council so that it can manage Sherwood Forest Country Park
  • Part of the land within the NNR is also leased to the Forestry Commission and both Thoresby Estate and the Forestry Commission would have to agree for seismic surveys to be carried out there
  • From spring 2018, the entire NNR will be managed by the RSPB
  • The wider Sherwood Forest has a range of different private and public landowners, which include the Forestry Commission"

One for the Woodland files...

Captain Black's picture

Residents: Opportunity Knocks

Oh, just a minute ....

Erm, so that £3mil for slope stabilisation ... will not improve their homes?

Its got now't to do with the Gibb, take that away  and what have you got?


Know your gnomes.... gift, horse etc etc.!!

Talk about shoot yourself in the foot ... Monday's decision has sweet naff all to do with approving Flamingoland by the Coast ... that process still has to go through planning and the whole 'sum' of the 'parts' has then to be underwritten by the professionals. 

Due process ....


Those properties were slipping ten years ago and were purchased on the cheap...15 years ago they were derelict.  Now about that Bell.

Ding dong.

Erm,   time for a work it out.

Exciting tho ... innit x

Now where is that Titanic clip ..... ffs

Oh that feels better.


Tick tock...

Don't knock what you can't afford ;-)

Oh, OK: -))

Ah, so ... I can see Nick reaching for his invoice pad ... there's now't wrong with a bit of listing


Captain Black's picture

YCR: English Heritage

Yup I've just listened to some rather selective twaddle again.... now erm as per the record said Cllrs have been on various committees, scrutiny groups etc re the Futurist development for the last ten years why are they only now chirping about the safety of local residents... have they been slightly remissive?

Check the facts & focus: Page 378

"up to £416,000 will be expended over a period of 30 weeks. However the Council can terminate these services at any time without any liability other than the cost incurred or committed to date, such as at the end of January 2017, when the results of the further ground investigation are available..."

With regard to yesterdays meeting Arup & Willmott Dixon assured Members that no works on site would take place untill all risks were removed (100%)

Fact.. the Deisgn & Build project would require third party checks and a full NEC contract underwritten including 19 compensation events.  No piling would take place without vibration monitoring and 100% safety having been considered.  Boreholes have produced a conclusive drilling report received November 2016.  Therefore questions regarding piling could only be answered at the correct time.  Full demolition along with firm proposals and a Feasibility study is scheduled to be brought back to P&D in June 2017. The platform development does not require piling.

Squeaky seats...  or selective engineering?

String theory

Political Balls?  Clearly the residents have valid concerns and indeed they have legal redress ... finger pointing, tis rather lame.

Ergo... conversely the funding is of benefit to those perched upon 'Paradise' lost. 

PS; thats life ... but not as we know it afterall Old Age & treachery are no match for Youth n Talent ...

Now about that Dept of Punishment.

Oh yeah, learn to read : -)



Captain Qahn's picture

Futurist Listing

6:04am 9th March 2017

We're still open to ideas on what development should take place on the site of Scarborough's Futurist Theatre.

That's the message from borough council cabinet member Mike Cockerill, who says no deal has yet been done.

The current preferred option is a new attraction from the owners of Flamingo Land.

Cllr Mike Cockerill said:

"I think the decision's been taken, as we know, that the building is coming down. But if anyone has any other ideas for the use of the site, come forward and tell us about them. While we do have a preferred bidder, no deal is signed, so to me there is every opportunity for anybody to come forward."

Also above Cllr requested that the following be circulated:

"07 March 2017

Dear Mr Bourne,

Futurist Theatre, Foreshore Road, Scarborough, North Yorkshire

As you will know from our earlier letters we have been considering adding the above building to the List of Buildings of Special Architectural and Historic Interest, as a result of your application to issue a Certificate of Immunity (COI) for it.

We have now taken into account all the representations made and completed our assessment of the building. Having considered our recommendation, the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has decided not to add Futurist Theatre, Scarborough to the List.

Accordingly we can confirm that the Secretary of State hereby certifies that she does not intend to list the building.

Under section 6(2) of the 1990 Act, the effect of this certificate is to preclude the Secretary of State from listing Futurist Theatre, Scarborough for a period of five years from the date of issue (being the date of this letter), and to preclude the local planning authority from serving a Building Preservation Notice (BPN) on the building during that period.

Please follow the link below to download a copy of our advice report, prepared for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), which gives the principal reasons for this decision.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any further assistance. More information can also be found on our website at

 Yours sincerely"

"This means that the Theatre cannot be added to the register of listed buildings for a period of five years."


Oooh :





Captain Qahn's picture

Futurist Asbestos

"2:12pm 3rd March 2017

There's a warning to the public not to try to get into the building of Scarborough's Futurist Theatre.

It comes from the borough council after a company's found asbestos inside, which was as expected.

It says there could be asbestos fibres in the air inside.

The council's Member for Project Leadership, Mike Cockerill, said:

"We are going to put signs up, warning people not to enter the building due to this danger. We are aware that some people have been in illegally and we have a responsibility to people whether they're entering legally, or illegally. This is why we're putting the warning signs up".


oops :

Captain Black's picture

All Clear on The Futurist Front?

One for the Futile ;-))

"IT WAS a top-secret Chinese nuclear facility with a deadly Cold War mission — to make plutonium for an atomic bomb — but these days its doors are wide open as a tourist attraction.

The cavernous “816 Nuclear Military Engineering” installation was burrowed into lush green mountains in southwest China in a 17-year span by 60,000 soldiers toiling day and night in dangerous conditions.

Construction on the vast site began in 1967, three years after China successfully tested its first atomic weapon, as China hurried to catch its nuclear program up with that of Cold War rivals the United States and Soviet Union.

Located in the huge Chinese municipality of Chongqing, it covers 100,000 square metres — the equivalent of 14 football pitches — and with a volume equal to 600 Olympic-sized pools.

It has the world’s largest known network of man-made tunnels, its mazelike corridors extending more than 20 kilometres.

Surrounded by darkness and damp concrete, visitors are transported back to the Cold War.

“It’s very impressive and mysterious,” said Pan Ya, a thirty-something tourist from a neighbouring town who visited with her parents.

“They had heard about this place for a long time but were never able to come in,” she said while gazing at the old reactor core, now decorated with fake plutonium bars coloured a luminous green.


The facility cost 80 billion yuan (A$15 billion) but, ironically, no nuclear material ever passed through it due to a dramatic shift in developments above ground even as soldiers laboured below.

China established diplomatic ties with the US in 1979 and, later, tension with the Soviet Union also eased. Although near completion, the site was judged to have no further use and was abandoned in 1984.

Declassified in 2002, it was opened to Chinese tourists in 2010 and began welcoming foreign visitors at the end of 2016.

"More than 300,000 Chinese tourists have since visited, while less than 100 foreigners had done so as of last month.

Just 10 per cent of the corridors, massive halls and control rooms are open to the public, but visitors can view a light show projected upon a mammoth wall as music thunders, along with various exhibits, including a model of the first Chinese A-bomb.

“We’re not promoting nuclear weapons,” explains Zheng Zhihong, 816’s manager.

“Quite the opposite. I hope that one day the nuclear powers will say ‘Stop, let’s all count to three and destroy our arsenals’.”


816’s rebirth as a tourist attraction comes as little comfort to the thousands of soldiers who endured hellish conditions in blasting out the site’s corridors and halls.

“A colleague would detonate the explosives. Then we’d dig away at the rock with a machine. It could have collapsed at any minute,” recalls former soldier Chen Huaiwen, now 70.

"Tears welled up in the eyes of another former soldier who worked on 816, Li Gaoyun, as he viewed old photos displayed in the tunnels.

It was his first visit back in 42 years.

Li said many of the ex-soldiers who toiled at 816 receive no pensions or welfare benefits despite the enormous sacrifices they made for their country.

“A lot of the former workers have no pension, no social security. They don’t have enough to live on,” Li said.

“They owe us that. We gave our blood, our sweat. And our youth.”

Persistance is ...

How Now.

Cough ...

Sizing ...


Captain Qahn's picture

Hypothetical 'Walls'

"Thames Water been hit with a record fine of £20.3m after huge leaks of untreated sewage into the Thames and its tributaries and on to land, including the popular Thames path. The prolonged leaks led to serious impacts on residents, farmers, and wildlife, killing birds and fish.

The fine imposed on Wednesday was for numerous offences in 2013 and 2014 at sewage treatment works at Aylesbury, Didcot, Henley and Little Marlow, and a large sewage pumping station at Littlemore..."

"“I have to make the fine sufficiently large that [Thames Water] get the message,” he said. Describing the breaches as “wicked” and noting the companies “continual failure to report incidents” and “history of non-compliance”, he said: “One has to get the message across to the shareholders that the environment is to be treasured and protected, and not poisoned.”..."

"I have been asked to provide you a response regarding the integrity of  Yorkshire Water combined gravity sewer systems in the above locations.

Although i do not have the knowledge to comment on the 'Old Quartons place on Seamer Road'. I can inform you that the large flap valve located at the Southern end of South Bay is a permitted high level storm outlet from Yorkshire Waters
'Aquarium Top Combined Sewerage Overflow' where flows converge into the  Foreshore Road Sewer. This asset would only spill in very heavy rainfall conditions or upon complete failure of our Foreshore Road Sewer. The investment in 'Toll House Sewerage Pump Station' on Marine Drive as part of
the revised Bathing Water Directive has helped to reduce the spill frequency of this asset over a 10 year modelled rainfall data series. For example, in 2016 didn't operate at all and therefore no sewerage spills occurred directly into South Bay from this asset. The asset is monitored 24/7 via Telemetry.

To help re-assure you, the condition of these sewers are checked regularly and relevant defects are progressed to resolution. An example of this was recent CCTV investigation which informed investment in lining on Valley Road where we proactively lined over 100m of 1300mm diameter combined

A key thing to keep in mind is that these sewers are not typically pressurised and act as a gravity route to our Toll House pumping station, where it is then pumped through pressurised mains to treatment at Scalby Mills. The sewers run at a much lower level than the Beach and Foreshore
Road. If the Foreshore Road or Valley Road sewers were to fail we would mitigate the situation and resolve.

The soft sand mentioned in your email is likely due to Ground Water, but this would best be informed by SBC drainage engineers- the soft areas do not smell of sewerage or have any sewerage debris present that would indicate any leaks from our system."

George *** Yorkshire Water
Waste Water Services
Coastal Delivery & Engagement Manager

Spotted a leak?
If you spot a leak please report it immediately. Call us on 0800 57 3553 or go to "

Captain Qahn's picture

Futurist - Save The Soul

"The Futurist may be facing its final curtain but one campaigner is trying to ensure the memories it created will live on forever.

The supporter, who fought to save the Futurist Theatre from the wrecking ball, has now launched an ambitious plan to create a heritage archive of its history.

Andy Hylton said: “The project will preserve the heritage of the Futurist, covering the history of British seaside entertainment of the early 20th century, together with cinema history and the wider cultural history of Scarborough.”

In an appeal to local councillors for the venture, he said: “The Futurist is of significant local and international value.

“It is emblematic of an important and underrepresented period of British social history.” The aim, he said was to create a public collection of artefacts and archives covering the theatre’s 95-year history.

“There is an exciting opportunity to bring together all of the history of the Futurist together into one accessible collection. It will contain everything that can be retrieved from the theatre prior to its demolition – old programmes, posters, plans, artefacts, hardware, projectors, lighting control board, and period signage as well as recording oral histories from people who have worked, performed or visited the theatre.

“In short, retaining and archiving the entire surviving history of the building into one place.”

Mr Hylton said it would all be brought together under one roof as the Futurist Past Collection.

“Workshops will allow young people to learn new skills in video production, photography, art and communication,” he added. “These skills will be used to record oral histories with older residents and ex-staff members.

“They will be vital to retaining the historical value of the Futurist for future generations of residents and visitors.”

Scarborough Council voted to demolish the building despite more than 6,000 people signing a petition to save it."

Indeed.   One Councillor asked about salvage & reclamation.   One Councillor noted the circa £ 400K contingency in the demolition.  One Councillor made a special request that any salvageable items should be preserved for prosperity.   One Councillor specifically requested that Wilmott Dixon take care in removing 'Futurist' items.  One Councillor was told that the seats are damaged beyond repair and screwed in so tight they need to be whipped out.   One Councillor specifically requested that at the very least, the projector (which is weighted down and weighs rather a lot) is salvaged for prosperity.

Best not mention the Steinway ...

Any old Tune?


No 'political' Agenda.

Now, about that Joanna.... I hear drums ;-)

Ooh I think £3k is slightly  erm, 'Conservative'.

Knew I'd forgot somin ... 'load shedding'  :-)

Possession ... tis 9'10ths of somin or t'other.

Captain Black's picture

Futurist Keys & Notes

"10:51am 19th May 2017
(Updated 11:07am 19th May 2017)

A grand piano from Scarborough's Futurist Theatre is going to auction tomorrow (Saturday 20 May.)

It is estimated to be worth around £5,000-£7,000 and is being auctioned through David Duggleby's Auctioneers. On Duggleby's website, it is described as:

"Steinway & Sons concert grand piano, circa 1900, iron framed over strung movement in ebonised case, No. 96292, on gadroon carved turned and fluted supports (W152cm, H100cm, L275cm), with early 20th century ebonised stool, with adjustable leather upholstered stool - PROVENANCE - Futurist Theatre, Scarborough."

It's not know who is selling the piano as the details are classified.

However, this has been met with discontent from the group trying to save the Futurist. At the moment, the group are trying to raise funds in order to take legal action against Scarborough Borough Council following the decision to demolish the building, which was taken in January. 

Next month, they'll meet with a lawyer to decide if a judicial review can go ahead. They need to raise £10,000 in order to fund the legal services and have so far raised just under £2,000.

Debi Silver is from the Save the Futurist Campaign Group, she said:

"Whilst we are struggling as representing people of Scarborough and everywhere else to get money, the council can quite freely take stuff out of the theatre and sell it.

I would like to think that it hasn't been taken out of the Futurist Theatre by Scarborough Borough Council and put into Duggleby's.

That may well be the case, who knows? But it's rather strange that this piano is in for sale and it says 'PROVENANCE-Futurist Theatre.'"



Captain Qahn's picture

Shape Shifters

"6:43am 26th May 2017

Scarborough Borough Council has confirmed that it did sell a piano that was taken from the Futurist Theatre.

Last week we told you that it as going on sale through local auctioneers David Duggleby's.

Nick Edwards is the Borough Council Director, he said:

“The Steinway & Sons piano that was used in the Futurist theatre was sold last weekend at local auction for a gross sale of £12,600. The net proceeds will be used to support the council’s capital programme.”

Supporters trying to save the venue have expressed their unhappiness about the sale of a piece of the theatre. 

The Save The Futurist Campaign Group is looking to raise funds to start legal proceedings against the council after the decision to demolish the theatre  was made back in January.

Next month, the group will meet up with a lawyer and they need to raise £10,000 in order to start proceedings.

So far, they've raised just under £2,000."

Oh, OK:

Captain Black's picture

Futurist 'Merchants"

"Campaigners hoping to save the Futurist were dealt a double blow when their bid for a judicial review was denied and they were ordered to pay the council’s costs.

The Save the Futurist campaign argued their case in front of a judge in Leeds last week but were not successful and now must also fork over £10,000 to Scarborough Council.

Cllr Helen Mallory, Deputy Leader of Scarborough Council said: “We have always been confident that the decisions made by Full Council and Cabinet in relation to the Futurist theatre earlier this year were made properly and in accordance with legal requirements.

“We are therefore pleased with the High Court judge’s ruling to refuse permission for a Judicial Review of those decisions. The judge found in the council’s favour on all grounds raised by the claimant, Save The Futurist Theatre (Scarborough) Ltd and also ordered the claimant to pay costs to the council of £10,000.

“Last Friday’s ruling comes on the back of the outcome of a Local Government Ombudsman ruling into a complaint made about the same matters, which also found no evidence of fault in how the council had acted. We are continuing to work with Flamingo Land on their exciting plans for a brand new attraction for Scarborough South Bay and we look forward to progressing these further in the coming months.”

The campaigners said they would be having discussions with the legal teams before commenting further."

Oh, OK :

"If you prick us, do we not bleed, if you tickle us, do we not laugh? ...."

Captain Black's picture

The Sky Lark ....

"The Royal Navy's new aircraft carrier is due to set sail for the first time later from the Rosyth dockyard in Fife.

HMS Queen Elizabeth - one of two new carriers being built in the yard at a cost of more than £6bn - is to begin sea trials.

She is the largest warship ever built for the Royal Navy. Her flightdeck alone is the size of three football pitches.

Once in service she can operate with a crew of 1,000 and 40 aircraft.

Tight manoeuvre

The 65,000 tonne warship is the Royal Navy's first aircraft carrier since HMS Ark Royal was scrapped in 2010.

Eleven tugs will be needed to manoeuvre her out of the dock at Rosyth.

The ship will just about squeeze through the narrow entrance into the estuary.

Once there she will start her engines and wait for low tide to go under the Forth bridges.

She will have to lower a mast to make it through with just a few metres to spare.

The BBC's defence correspondent Jonathan Beale said that if all went according to plan, HMS Queen Elizabeth would be sailing toward open waters on Monday evening.

He said the Royal Navy expected Russia's military to take an interest while the warship was being tested in the North Sea.

It will be several years before HMS Queen Elizabeth is fully operational with jets on board."


Captain Qahn's picture

The Punch & Judy Show ....

"6:02am 4th July 2017

Labour members of Scarborough Borough Council have walked out of a meeting in protest at what they say was a lack of democracy.

It happened during yesterday's meeting of the full council, the final one before the summer break.

Their leader Cllr. Steve Siddons and others weren't happy at being denied the opportunity to raise questions about how the no confidence meeting last week was conducted.

That meeting descended into chaos, and was suspended for around half an hour, with the Mayor initially ordering the public to leave, before relenting and allowing them to stay.

Mayor Cllr. Martin Smith repeatedly refused to allow Cllr. Siddons to raise the issue at yesterday's meeting, and asked him to sit down several times.

After the deputy leader of the Labour group, Cllr. Tony Randerson, was also prevented from asking the question, Cllr. Siddons walked out of the meeting, followed by many of his colleagues.

Speaking to us after the meeting, Cllr. Steve Siddons said:..."   ? who cares.

Five* walked the majority stayed ... ya know to conduct the business of the Borough ;-)

Best not mention gnomes. ... and the glove compartment.

Oh, OK

*Oops...  One hobbled.