From the artwork on our walls, including from acclaimed local felt painter Moy Mackay, to our long-time involvement in creative events around the town, we are always delighted to support what is a wonderfully vibrant arts scene here in Peebles. And at its epicentre is the Eastgate Theatre, created through the conversion of an imposing old church on the High Street back in 2004. Since then, the theatre’s programme has grown hugely, and it now delivers an incredibly varied mix of professional and community events and performances for all ages, covering drama, comedy, live music, children’s theatre, classes, workshops, courses and more.
The theatre also holds a range of annual festivals – Peebles Outdoor Film Festival, Creative Peebles Festival, read-a-licious and Rapt in Winter – many of which the Tontine is also closely involved with.
Today, the Eastgate is the busiest independent arts venue in the Scottish Borders, with more than 50,000 people coming through the doors each year. It’s great news, and a sign of how much the theatre is valued and used, but such demand has put increasing pressure on the current building.
As such, it has now embarked on plans that aim to increase participation in its activities by creating facilities that better meet the needs of the growing population of Peebles and surrounding area. It’s an ambitious plan that involves raising around £50,000 in funds from the community that will be used to help lever investment of more than £1.5million into Peebles to develop and extend the theatre.
The Tontine is doing its bit with a special French Fancies with Fizz fundraising event in our Adam Room this coming Sunday (29 April). A deliciously indulgent afternoon, customers will be able to relax to laid-back tunes from the Gerard Dott Trio while enjoying our famous afternoon tea – all washed down with a glass or two of fizz.
The event also sees support from a dozen local businesses that have each donated a magnificent object or experience for a silent auction during the afternoon. The range of donations reflect the wealth of great things to see and do in and around Peebles – from a Go Ape experience for two and a private guided tour of Dawyck Botanic Garden to a masterclass at Cocoa Black’s Chocolate and Pastry School.
Throw in the likes of original artwork from Moy Mackay, a pudding lover’s dinner party from outside caterer Hyndberry, 1:1 Pilates, physio and massage sessions from The Health Rooms and Peebles Physio, plus a mountain bike course courtesy of Swift Trails and there is something for every possible interest.
Whether locals or visitors from further afield, we do hope you will join us for what just might be the most relaxing fundraising you’ve ever done!
French Fancies with Fizz, 3-5pm, Sunday 29 April. Tickets £15, available from Box Office on 01721 725777, online here, or from reception at the Tontine Hotel.
And for much more on the Eastgate Theatre’s development plans, see here.