Theatres and arts venues in West Dorset have announced their closure and postponed events due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The temporary closures come after people have been advised by the government to avoid pubs, clubs and theatres.

While most events have been cancelled, an exhibition at The Gallery in Symondsbury is still scheduled to go ahead.

A spokesman for Bridport Electric Palace said: “Following a request from the government for venues to voluntarily shut down as part of ‘social distancing’ measures, Bridport Electric Palace will be temporarily closing as a venue from today (March 17).

“Most of our March and April events have been postponed and will be rescheduled for a later date. A small number of events have been cancelled. We are aiming to announce new dates for the rescheduled events by the end of April.”

Tickets will remain valid for the new rescheduled date. If you cannot attend on the new date, you will be given an Electric Palace account credit. The credit can be used to buy tickets for other Electric Palace events.”

New dates for events will be published on the Electric Palace website.

Meanwhile tickets for cancelled events will be refunded as soon as possible and contact Bridport TIC if you purchased a ticket from them.

Bridport Arts Centre announced it will be closing for the immediate future on Tuesday (March 17).

A statement from staff and the board of trustees said: “We are already looking at options and will endeavour to reprogram certain events, but please be aware that there is no certainty in this. Customers who have bought tickets are welcome to make contact by phone or email for refunds. We would also appreciate anyone who may feel financially able, to donate their ticket price to the charity which runs the venue, to help sustain our future while we do our bit to support the community. Thanks to all for your support.”

A spokesman for The Lyric Theatre, also in Bridport, said: “Due to the current health situation we are postponing public events at The Lyric until the end of April, with a view to reschedule these at a later date where possible.

“As per government advice we do not wish to put audiences, our volunteer team or visiting artists at risk in crowded situations. Please keep an eye on our Facebook page, website ( or join our mailing list, for further information.

“We are still working until further notice, and some artists are choosing to rehearse here and use the building to develop their work. Contact if you have ideas and wish to use the space for self-contained purposes. We are keen to support the artist community where we can.”

The Marine Theatre in Lyme Regis has also announced that it will be closing temporarily in the ‘interest of public health’.

A statement from the theatre said: “All events until the end of April will be rescheduled where possible. The Marine is awaiting further advice from authorities for events before setting a date to reopen. Ticket holders will be notified of changes by phone or email as soon as possible - it is not necessary to contact the theatre and we appreciate your patience at this difficult time. We look forward to welcoming you back to the Marine once the situation is safer. In the meantime, we would like to say thank you for your understanding and wish you and your families well.”

For more information about cancelled/rescheduled events and refunds visit the venues’ websites.

Lyme Regis Museum, Bridport Museum and Bridport LSi have also all closed for the forseeable future.

Find out what the community is doing to keep the vulnerable and elderly safe at this time here and what local businesses are doing during the coronavirus outbreak here