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Doug Twigg Chair of the Trust


What does the Trust do? It’s our job to set the direction of the Flavel and make sure we are financially sustainable. We organise the fundraising and look after the building. One of our recent projects was the new seating in the main auditorium; it took a year to raise the £52,000 required. We have to organise fundraising activities and find charitable trusts and generous individual donors.


How hard is it to raise the money? All fundraising is challenging but it certainly helps that the Flavel seems to be a well-loved community asset. People really take it to their heart and want to support it. That’s clear by the huge number of volunteers who come forward to do anything from box office sales to cleaning up the popcorn after a film.


Do trust members have to get their hands dirty? Yes, there’s a lot of behind the scenes work. Alongside our great staff, we have to make sure everything is in working order; looking around to see where a new lick of paint is needed or dealing with the lift when it needs a new motor. If anything goes wrong we either deal with it ourselves or decide who should come in to fix it and whether we have enough cash in the pot. We’re constantly adapting to keep the building up to date; we’ve recently added new energy saving LED stage lights and a new PA system. The trust members visit and talk about other venues in Devon to make sure we


aren’t getting left behind.


What do you like best about the Flavel? The buzz before a sell-out live performance. People will be milling around in the bar area and you know something good is about to happen in the auditorium. I love it when lots of people come out of their homes to meet and see something all together - there is a real sense of community.


Have you got any space for new clubs and societies who might be looking to rent a room? Yes, we have so many great classes and workshops here. We always have people coming to us with new ideas and asking if they can book a slot. People in Dartmouth really do have a great selection to choose from and we find many people travel here from other towns in the area. There’s yoga, bridge, dancing, French, history, flowers and stitching. Many of our events are put on by U3A (University of the Third Age), which specialises in activities for older people.


What do you do when you aren’t looking after this place? Actually my wife and I usually end up back here – in the audience! We like coming to watch theatre productions and concerts. We also enjoy sailing and have a boat on the river. I do like getting out in the garden and doing the odd bit of reading when I have time.


You are retired now, what did you do? I was a civil engineer with an interna- tional design consultancy business.


Sally Walley Volunteer


Where in the Flavel can we find you? Acting as a steward in the main auditorium, opening up on a Saturday morning or in the box office.


What’s life like on the front desk? We do find ourselves acting as an alter- native to the Tourist Information Centre with people often picking our brains for local knowledge about the town.


But I don’t mind at all because I love talking to people and when you’ve got them in the foyer you can show them all the great things we have on offer - which can lead to them buying a couple of tickets for that evening’s theatre performance!


Why did you choose to be a volunteer? Because I love this place! I am passionate about art and drama and


It meant working and living around the world and our two children spent many of their younger years in the Far East. When in Britain we used to live in Cambridge but we moved down to Dartmouth 16 years ago.


Whats your favourite meal out? A good local pub with local food.


What is your guilty pleasure? Chocolate – any time of day.


What item would you take to a desert island? A family photo.


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