Planning application approved for changes to Maryport’s Carlton


Amendments to a planning application for the transformation of Maryport’s former Carlton Cinema have been approved.

Cumberland Council’s Maryport regeneration team applied for an amendment to the planning application for the Carlton on Senhouse Street to increase audience capacity in the main ground floor auditorium to ensure the space is as flexible as possible for the future. The proposed redesign meant the need to rearrange the ventilation and acoustic measures too.

The building’s recreation as a community arts, music, and theatre venue is part of the £12 million regeneration of Maryport which is being carried out by the Council. Funding for this has been provided by the Government’s Future High Streets initiative.

Building work on the project is already well underway. The ground floor of the building has been lowered to create a large performance space, and obstructive interior walls have been removed to maximise the capacity. On the upper floors, original windows have been reinstated and rooflights fitted. The first floor will be workshop space for creatives, with rehearsal and sound recording rooms. The second floor will become additional commercial space, which could be offices or additional creative space, depending on the future tenants.

Next door, a derelict property which blighted the high street has been demolished and that will form a new entrance, box office and bar for the venue after the creation of a contemporary extension to the building.

Leader of Cumberland Council, Councillor Mark Fryer, said:

“We want the Carlton to be a real cultural and creative destination in West Cumbria. This will be a brilliant community arts, music and theatre venue with workshop space on the upper floors for artisans and businesses to hire.

“It is bringing this former bank and cinema back to life, preserving a huge piece of Maryport’s history, and is a major part of the wider regeneration of the town. There was no way we could not intervene to save this landmark building and I look forward to seeing its successful future.”