A COMMUNITY theatre group is setting up their new base – in the heart of Newport.

Community interest group Reality Theatre has "outgrown" its Robbins Lane Studios and is relocating to a new base at 22 Cambrian Road in Newport city centre.

The unit is awaiting planning permission from Newport City Council, but once approved the space will be used for rehearsals, performances, workshops and events.

Reality Theatre’s key staff members are company director Juls Benson, community arts base manager Joe Wagstaff, and participation manager Kiri Evans.

South Wales Argus: Kiri Evans, Juls Benson, and Joe Wagstaff in the new baseKiri Evans, Juls Benson, and Joe Wagstaff in the new base

Ms Benson, said: “We outgrew Robbins Lane as we had too many sessions, participants, and projects.

“We needed a bigger space in which to reherase, hold sessions and perform.

“We wanted to establish an actual community arts base, for theatre, music, and short film, to develop the different strands of our company.

“We are going to have a full programme of activities, as we’ve had new funding – it is going to be great.”

Reality Theatre has been given funding from the Newport Participatory grant: £5,000 for a creative drop-in day and £5,000 for a drama club with Coleg Gwent students who have additional needs.

The company also has £29,000 from TSRF (third sector resilience fund).

South Wales Argus: Joe Wagstaff helping with building refurbishmentsJoe Wagstaff helping with building refurbishments

“Our outreach work is expanding and we're working with students with additional needs in Coleg Gwent’s campuses in Torfaen and Blaenau Gwent,” added Ms Benson.

“Our work with older people – with Newport City Homes and Pobl – is also developing.”

Reality Theatre works with older people to avoid isolation, adapting to challenges during the Covid lockdowns to ensure these people didn’t become isolated.

“We are a working-class company with social aims – to bring about change through theatre, film, and music,” continued Ms Benson.

“It is fabulous to be in the centre of Newport and our participants have been key in helping us get the base ready – cleaning, decorating, and moving stuff.

“It truly is a community base.”

South Wales Argus: Reality Theatre's new base is coming along nicelyReality Theatre's new base is coming along nicely

To find out more about Reality Theatre and the work that they do visit www.realitytheatre.co.uk/or find them on Facebook @realitytheatre