The Capitol re-opened in September 2003 after a comprehensive refurbishment and extension of the previous Horsham Arts Centre. It comprises of a 410 seat Theatre, 2 Cinema Screens, Studio Theatre, Meeting Room and Gallery Space. All areas are fully accessible from the ground floor level, with lift facilities for disabled users. The Theatre, Cinemas and Studio are equipped with infra-red transmission systems for the hard of hearing.
The recent refurbishment of The Capitol is just one chapter in a long history of entertainment and the arts in Horsham. The site of the current Capitol was originally an ABC Cinema. First opened in 1936 as a one screen with a 900 seat capacity, it was then just one of many cinemas in Horsham.
The original Capitol theatre (after which, the new arts centre is named) was actually situated a few minutes walk away on the site that is now Marks and Spencer. With its closure in 1983, the council purchased the ABC on North Street and developed it into the Horsham Arts Centre. This opened its doors to the public Christmas 1984.
After nearly 20 years, Horsham Arts Centre closed its doors in January 2002 and so marked the beginning of what was arguably the most ambitious and impressive change to the town’s key entertainment centre. A massive £6million refurbishment was completed this September 2003 and the result is a stunning arts complex that melds the elegant art-deco features of the original ABC with an innovative and modern design for the 21st Century. After being closed for just 20 months, the exciting new venue offers unrivalled all round facilities including a theatre, 2 cinemas, studio, gallery space and stylish café and lounge bar.
The Box Office opens 9:45am – 8pm Monday to Saturday and 30 minutes prior to the first film or event on Sunday. It offers a comprehensive booking service for all shows and events at The Capitol as well as selected regional events. [image credit: Toby Philips Photography]