TROWBRIDGE is coming back to life after lockdown, and on August 1 the Town Hall will open its doors again, with community projects planned to bring the town's culture back to the fore.

Things will look a little different inside the Market Place building, and not just because of direction signs, hand sanitising and social distancing.

The cafe, which has been running from steps during lockdown, is moving back inside to the ground floor court room, which has been revamped.

The hall and the cafe will also open in the evenings on Fridays and Saturdays, giving people somewhere to go for a drink and to enjoy live music - once this is permitted.

"Straight away we will reopen the Zero Waste shop, our bookshop and art supplies shop," explained director David Lockwood.

"The gallery space will also be open upstairs, and our first exhibition will be of art work made by Trowbridge people during lockdown - we want submissions.

"We're also going to run a community project creating a Song for Trowbridge, celebrating what people love most about the town.

"Sadly we're not allowed to sing in the building yet, so we'll have it filmed and broadcast.

"We'll have more events through the summer and autumn as we are allowed.

"It's ironic that just as we go ahead with the courtroom project we can't use it exactly as we wanted, but people can see the changes when we reopen."

Jen Hamblin, the Hall's new exhibition curator, said: "When lockdown happened, many things froze. The creativity celebrated in places like the Town Hall went into people’s homes. It was as if the restrictions encouraged us to create. Rainbows filled windows, people sang songs on zoom, and new creative skills were learnt.

"So when it came to reopening the Town Hall, it was obvious to us what should go in our first exhibition. We want to shine a light on all of the fantastic work made over the last few months.

"You can share anything. A crochet blanket, a wood carving, things that don’t quite hang on a wall? We’ll also make space for photographs, so if you’ve baked a cake of which you’re particularly proud or a garden that looks better than it ever has, send them our way."

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The reopening announcement comes in the same week that Wiltshire Council backed an ambitious bid for £23m of government cash to replan Trowbridge - and David feels the Hall's future is a key part of the town.

"Things are not going to go back to how they were," he said. "It's important that we are part of making Trowbridge move forward, we've seen a decade's change in months."

The Town Hall got £35,000 in the first round of Arts Council grants to help organisations survive lockdown. The latest set of grants, announced this week, saw an £18,132 windfall handed to The Pound in Corsham, where it was gratefully received.

The centre said: “We have been overwhelmed by generosity, love and kindness so far. Donations, messages of support and engagement with us during this period is just staggering."