The Paul Hamlyn Foundation

In May 2013 we received the news that Paul Hamlyn Foundation was to award us a gift of £500,000 to help us widen our audiences, with a particular focus on building sustainable relationships with community partners in our local area.
The Paul Hamlyn Foundation

“This award will allow us to expand our existing audience development work and invest in new ways to create meaningful relationships with Gorbals residents, young people, and those who face barriers to attending performances or participating in our learning activities, welcoming them to a theatre that is truly at the heart of the community.”

- Dominic Hill, Citizens Theatre Artistic Director

(May 2013)

Over the last year and a half we have been busy putting this major award into action with 3,346 tickets to 13 different shows being supported by this funding from Paul Hamlyn Foundation through five key projects:


The Deaf Theatre Club was first started in autumn 2013. Working with Solar Bear (a specialist deaf arts organisation) and Deaf Connections (a deaf support organisation based very near the Citizens), the Theatre holds regular Deaf Theatre Club nights, which include trained staff on hand to welcome patrons, a BSL interpreted pre-show talk, BSL interpreted performance and feedback after the event. To support these nights, we produce BSL and captioned introductory films to our seasons, captioned trailers and promotional material.

Find out more about the Deaf Theatre Club


With the building of the new Laurieston Living development across the road from the Citizens Theatre, there are going to be lots of new families moving into our community. Through our dedicated Follow the Family programme, from autumn 2014 we are working directly with eight families from the new development, giving the whole family, from children to grandparents, the opportunity to participate in our projects and events, and see our shows. The eight families are diverse in their make-up and experience of theatre, so following their journeys will be very interesting. We look forward to sharing their stories with you over the coming year.

At the same time we are encouraging all new residents to sign up for a Gorbals Card and to learn more about our wider range of activities.


The Citizens Theatre is proud to have been part of the Gorbals community for 70 years and our Gorbals Card allows people who live in the area to come to the theatre for just £2 a ticket.

The Gorbals Card was first set up in 1998 with the help of a grant from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. Its aim was to encourage people living locally to the theatre to come and see our shows without being put off by the cost. The theatre decided to carry on the scheme on its own, and has been offering discounted tickets to residents in the G5 postcode ever since.

Thanks to this new Paul Hamlyn support in the next five years we want to give more people from the Gorbals the opportunity to see our shows more often.

Find out more about the Gorbals Card and how to get yours.


The Just Go initiative is a special project that aims to encourage young people in their final couple of years of school to think about theatre as a cool ‘night out’.

Young people aged 16-18 are our future audience. They are starting to question the world and develop social habits that will last all their lives.

Citizens Theatre is working with two local schools (St Mungo’s Academy and King’s Park Secondary School) to organise trips to the Citizens for the entire S5 and S6 year groups in both schools. Our Learning Department collaborate with the teaching staff to introduce the plays to the students before their visit, provide extra resources and talk to them about the interesting things in the plays. A lot of work is done to get the students to advocate the theatre and the shows within their own peer groups, so it can be seen as a social activity, not just another school trip.

These year groups will be taken to see six productions over two years with their schools. After they leave school, they will be encouraged and supported to keep attending, hopefully leading to a life of greater engagement with theatre and the arts.


The Citizens Theatre Learning Department already works with a wide variety of groups (see our community projects page for more details) We want to continue to build meaningful relationships with individuals from groups and encourage them to come to at least three shows a year.