very day, Glen Clancy walks his dog Lola from his home in the north Manchester suburb of Prestwich to the local park. It's a short walk and each journey sees him passing what looks from the outside to be a fairly unassuming red-brick building. Inside, though, is such stuff as dreams are made of, or rather, was until a year ago. It’s the Studio Theatre, home of the Prestwich Amateur Dramatic and Operatic Society (Pados), and since the first lockdown began in March 2020, the theatre has been dark.
“You go from seeing people two, three, four times a week at rehearsals and planning and meetings, to nothing,” says Clancy, 50, who has been a member of Pados since 2018. “That place was always full of people, always alive. And now I walk past and it’s a shell of itself, it’s just empty, and that feels so sad.”
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