Why does the school need to fundraise for this project?
Over the last ten years the school has invested very significantly in facilities. Aldhelmsted West, the new Kenelm, the conversion of the Beddington building, the new Science Centre, the Sixth Form Centre… the school has funded all of these projects and more without fundraising. We are able to fund the majority of the £10m Arts Centre project, but we do need an extra £2.5m to reach the target. The appeal is a must.
I feel I’m paying enough in school fees. Why should I give?
This is an appeal: it’s voluntary and we have no expectation that everyone will give. However, it is a landmark project and the biggest fundraising challenge we have ever taken on, so we are really hoping that the Sherborne Girls community will respond with as many people as possible wanting to be part of it, at whatever level feels comfortable. We plan to put up a huge donor wall listing every donor (not the amount, just the name). A big list sends a powerful message to future generations.
How do I give?
Please visit the main Arts Centre landing page on our website here, which has a table in the right hand column detailing the different ways in which you can make a donation.
How will the project benefit the non-arty girl?
Who says anyone is ‘non-arty’? One of our aims is to encourage more girls to have a go. The Arts Centre will give us the wherewithal to lay on more house plays, open mic nights, poetry readings, song writing. Then there is the benefit of the recital hall which will become the new venue for assemblies and for seminars. And the foyer space, will become the place for girls to meet up between lessons, enjoy socials and even match teas. The new Centre will have a positive impact on every girl in the school, whatever their interests or talents. Furthermore, the project will also give a huge lift to our campus, making the school more attractive.
How will the Arts Centre benefit the wider community?
The recital hall will give us the venue to draw in musicians and audiences from beyond the immediate school community. This will be a really attractive space with superb acoustics and comfortable seating. Additionally, our new theatre in the converted Stuart Centre will allow us to host visiting professional productions.
What about car parking?
Yes, the new centre will take up most of the existing central car parking area, but there will still be a small car park for disabled visitors and deliveries. Other parking will have to move across the road to the Oxley Centre. So there will be a little more walking for people, but then it has never been ideal having a car park in the middle of the school.
What will happen to the tennis courts?
We have replaced the tennis courts in front of Wingfield-Digby with two new courts added to those situated on the edge of the pitches, immediately to the south of the existing Art Department. The courts have been refurbished so the school does not lose courts at all, but has a fantastic tennis hub.