The Lab looks to the future as it reveals new refurbished interior

The Northampton music and creative hub has used lockdown to improve and modernise the venue.

Sunday, 6th December 2020, 10:28 pm
The Lab in Charles Street, Northampton.

The Lab has reopened its doors with live music set to return to the venue this month and a raft of new improvements made during lockdown now on show.

The Northampton music and creative community hub in Charles Street was among the dozens of venues which were able to open again at the start of December under the Government’s Tier 2 guidelines.

The Lab’s committee used part of the money which it has received from the Culture Recovery Fund and other financial support to work with an interior designer and volunteers to improve the inside of the venue.

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The Lab in Charles Street, Northampton.

Chairwoman Kirsty Grace said: “We've had a lot of time to think about some of the things we needed to improve - it's been a while since we did anything.

“I think the place was looking a bit run-down, we didn't have the time or the money to do anything before now.

“We worked with interior designer Hannah Gray who had some ideas about how we could make the space work better and look fresher.

“It's amazing, it looks so much better. It's a lot more usable for when we do food and things like that as well.”

The Lab in Charles Street, Northampton.

The venue’s bar has been restyled and painted to co-ordinate with new ceiling sound panels which have also been installed.

The overall décor has been brought together to give it a more unified feel and a new PA system has been installed on the stage.

The recent improvements however are only the start of what the venue is hoping to do.

Miss Grace added: “We're actually consulting and looking to raise some funds to re-do the venue further.

The Lab in Charles Street, Northampton.

“We want to make it more accessible and open up the space so it's a better experience to watch a gig.

“We'll be looking at getting opinions on that as there could be big changes.”

The Lab opened temporarily between lockdowns, however, reopened again on December 2.

In the run up to Christmas, it will be hosting gigs by radio station NLive, Lay It Down and Karl Phillips among others.

Miss Grace said: “Opening is complicated because of the restrictions but we're really hoping we'll be able to do it justice.

“The funding from the Arts Council has made reopening possible. People still need live music and we still need our community.

“We got £54,000 and although that sounds like a lot of money, when you look at how much it takes to run this business and to put events on it will only carry us through the next six months or so.

“We're still having to tread really carefully but honestly, if we hadn't had it, I don't know where we'd be.”

For more information and details of forthcoming events at The Lab visit https://www.facebook.com/thelabnorthampton