The show will go on for King George’s Hall

Published Thursday 8 July 2021 at 10:39

The heart of Blackburn is looking forward to beating once again as Covid restrictions continue to ease.

Neil Dagnall, Venues Operations Manager at King George’s Hall, said closing the doors to customers last March was heart-breaking. He commented:

We’re in the business of welcoming people – and we’ve not been able to do that.We create experiences for the people of Blackburn and Darwen – but we’ve not been able to.

It’s all those physical emotions that we’ve just not been able to achieve any more – and we’re really looking forward to opening our doors and creating them again.

Neil, who also oversees Darwen Library Theatre which was able to reopen in June on a reduced capacity, is taking part in Blackburn with Darwen Council’s ‘Picture This’ campaign.

The campaign features people across the borough talking about the things they miss due to Coronavirus, reminding us that if we all play our part to control the spread of the virus we can get back to doing the things we love quicker.

Neil said:

I’m looking forward to receiving the first compliments that we’ve done a good night, but most of all I’m looking forward to opening these doors and getting people in.

The shutdown has given us the opportunity to make some changes. King George’s Hall used to be a salmon pink colour inside and we’ve changed that over to regal blues and greys.

Watch Neil speaking about his experience during the pandemic and how King George’s Hall and Darwen Library Theatre have adapted to meet the challenges:

Despite bookings of comedians, bands and other fantastic artists not being able to take place, the hall opened up as a community testing hub.

Neil explained:

This venue is a community space for the people of Blackburn and Darwen. It always has been. With the crisis that we’re under it made sense to use this building for the people, to get everyone tested.

Poised to open its doors to audiences again in August, Neil said he’s hoping the reaction will be one of excitement as customers return.

I think there will be some nervousness around whether it’s safe for them to come – but we’re doing everything we can do to make it safe. Please come back. We’re waiting for you.

Coun Damian Talbot, Executive Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, added:

The pandemic has had a devastating impact on the events and hospitality sector. At King George’s Hall, the team have used the time they’ve been closed wisely to redecorate. The building is now looking very smart and is ready and waiting to welcome back visitors who we know are also looking forward to getting back to some kind of normality – including socialising with friends and family once again.

Find out what’s on at King George’s Hall and Darwen Library Theatre and book tickets at

Find out more about the Picture This campaign here.

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