A SOUTHAMPTON theatre whose operator has gone into administration is to be given a new lease of life.

The Mayflower will take over NST City, which is now set to be called MAST - which stans for Mayflower Studios.

The decision has just been taken by councillors during a full council meeting at Southampton City Council.

Civic chiefs backed plans for a new 35 year lease with the Mayflower and a grant of £511,250 over two financial years (£221,250 for 2020/21 and £290,000 for 2021/22) to Mayflower Academy Limited.

The company will be supported by and part of “an experienced leadership team” within the wider Mayflower Theatre Trust.

The news comes as Nuffield Southampton Theatres (NST) – which ran the NST City in the cultural quarter and the Nuffield Theatre at the University of Southampton – went into administration in May.

Presenting the new proposals to councillors Cllr Satvir Kaur, cabinet member for homes and culture at the city council, said: "I am delighted to present something today that not only reflects the commitment of everyone that has worked hard to get to this stage but also something that adds value to our cultural aspiration within the city."

She described the application put forward by the Mayflower Theatre Trust as "really strong".

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She added: "I hope that this time we can pull together as a city so that we can help Southampton and Southampton people to reach their full potential. I hope today we can all come together and wish MAST every success."

The move was backed by the leader of the opposition, Cllr Dan Fitzhenry.

He said: "We want to be able to have the confidence in people who are our partners to provide the shows and fun that we want to see in the city and we have that in the Mayflower. It is a real pleasure to be supporting the proposals."

As reported, NST City was billed as the  “jewel in the crown” of Southampton multi-million pound Cultural Quarter.

A petition was presented to the council in July this year as thousands of people asked civic chiefs to save the venue.