Sadler’s Wells theatre has opened a consultation with staff over proposals that put more than a quarter of its staff at risk of redundancy because of the coronavirus outbreak.
The world famous dance venue said the continued closure of its venues and uncertainty about when they could fully reopen meant it had been forced to begin a consultation that put 51 permanent and fixed-term roles at risk of redundancy or layoff.
This represents 26 per cent of its permanent and fixed-term workforce, the theatre said in a statement.
The Sadler’s Wells Trust, the charity behind the theatre, had an income of £27.4m in the year to the end of March 2019, figures on the Charity Commission website show.
The charity has furloughed almost 90 per cent of staff but the closure of its venues has resulted in a more than 80 per cent loss of income, it said.
It said it had received a grant from the Arts Council England’s Culture Recovery Fund, which would secure the charity’s survival until October.
“This process will be very difficult for all members of the Sadler’s Wells community,” the charity’s statement said.
“The decision to enter a consultation process has been incredibly hard to make, and one which the organisation has done all it can to avoid.”
Alistair Spalding, artistic director and chief executive of Sadler’s Wells, said: “Every colleague at Sadler’s Wells has played their part in making Sadler’s Wells what it is today, and I am heartbroken that we have to embark on this process.
“We’ve searched long and hard to avoid having to take this course of action for as long as possible, but given the current situation, and in the face of continued uncertainty, it has become unavoidable.”