A HAMPSHIRE theatre is to almost double the amount of seats in after the public had their say over a multi-million pound refit.

Fareham Borough Council have changed their plans to transform Ferneham Hall after residents expressed their views during a consultation.

The venue is to see a multi-million-pound change after the council shared its vision for the hall with the people of the borough.

Following the consultation, the council’s executive agreed to alter its plans.

Executive member for leisure, Cllr Sue Bell, said: “We have listened to a range of views and changed our plans to reflect what people want at Ferneham Hall. These plans will totally transform Ferneham Hall and it is an exciting time for the venue.”

The changes include the main auditorium having 800 seats rather than the 400-500 seats originally proposed, a flexible studio space that can be used for a range of activities instead of a studio solely dedicated to dance and making the secondary performance space more flexible to encourage a range of uses.

By doubling the amount of proposed seats, the council are hoping to attract more popular shows to the venue. Their research shows that theatres with around 800 seats can generally attract higher profile and better-quality shows, generating more income through tickets sales and “on the night” spending such as on food and drink.

The remodelled venue will also act as a community centre with daytime and evening activities, seven days a week.