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Emmerdale actress Zoe Henry, 49, lamented the closure of the Manchester theatre where she “started her career”. The star’s comments come after comedian Jason Manford, 41, took to Twitter yesterday to rage at Oldham council over the controversial decision.
Zoe is a soap actress best known for her roles in Emmerdale, Doctors, Coronation Street, and EastEnders.
Many fans will remember her as Rhona Goskirk from Emmerdale, where she met her husband Jeff Hordley, who portrays the iconic Cain Dingle.
This morning, Zoe shared an update from Oldham Coliseum Theatre, a historic venue in Greater Manchester.
Upon hearing the sad news that the theatre is set to close its doors, she tweeted: “I, like many others, started my career here.
“What an absolute tragedy,” she added with a sad emoji, while her Emmerdale co-star Tom Lister echoed her sentiments with tearful and facepalm emojis.
The original post from Oldham Theatre issued a statement earlier yesterday morning, explaining that it has now “entered into a consultation period”.
Jason didn’t hold back after seeing the statement, tweeting: “Someone at Oldham council should be absolutely ashamed that they have let this happen.
“Arts council funding of £1.4m into Oldham yet they’ve decided not to spend any of it on this historic theatre.
“I’m sure the multi-storey carpark or Safestore storage unit will bring the same joy,” he added sarcastically.
At the time, Twitter users were quick to echo the presenter’s sentiments, with Jackie writing: “This is so sad. I’ve seen many memorable plays and performances there.”
“How on earth has this been allowed to happen?!” Denise asked, while Yvette simply wrote: “Heartbreaking.”
“Why on earth is this STILL happening in years to come I feel there will be NONE left for us to enjoy,” Christine commented. (sic)
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While Michelle added: “Its such a shame, councils don’t give a damn, only interested in spending money on the things they can make good money from!!! Total greed.” (sic)
Meanwhile, the statement from the venue read: “Following the news on November 4, 2022 that Oldham Coliseum will no longer be a part of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio from April 1, 2023, the Board of Trustees and Senior Leadership Team have been working hard to find a solution to this reduction in funding.
“However, the current financial situation is not sustainable for the running of a full-time theatre. It is with great regret therefore that we announce that we have entered into a consultation period with all staff and it is proposed that Oldham Coliseum Theatre will close its doors on Friday March 31, 2023.
“The Coliseum is working with Arts Council England and Oldham Council to ensure a smooth transition period for the company, including funding to enable support for our workforce and honouring commitments to artists,” the statement continued.
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