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Community accuses Kiln Theatre trustees of breaking code of governance as talks collapse over controversial Tricycle name change

PUBLISHED: 17:05 21 December 2018

Protest against Tricycle Theatre's name change to Kiln (Picture: Richard Kates)

Protest against Tricycle Theatre's name change to Kiln (Picture: Richard Kates)

Archant

Campaigners opposed to a Kilburn theatre's name change are demanding trustees "come clean" over its consultation process.

The Kiln, formerly known as the Tricycle, reopened in September to protests against the name change. The community claims it was not consulted but Kiln trustees continue to counter claim that they were.

Following three meetings about how the name change has divided the community, they claim trustees terminated talks last month.

In response to this standoff, campaigners submitted a series of detailed questions about Kiln’s compliance with the Charity Commission’s code of governance.

In a letter sent on December 10, they asked trustees to release the evidence supporting the alleged consultation. They still await a response.

Martin Fisher, who founded the campaign, said: “The code makes it absolutely clear that Kiln should be transparent and accountable. Communication should be ‘genuine and open’, not secret and confidential. The Charity Commission calls for ‘suitable consultation with stakeholders’, which has been sadly lacking.”

He added: “They don’t want to budge but they will have to. Under the code they are obliged to be transparent. The evidence for the consultation needs to be released. They won’t release the questionnaire upon which the consultation was based.

“Instead the spurious grounds for withholding information about the consultation is ‘commercial confidentiality’.

“We believe they are obliged under the government code to release the analysis of the consultation.”

An online petition now has more than 3,000 signatures. Campaigners recently set up a stall at the Queen’s Park Farmer’s Market where more locals have said they were not consulted and signed the petition.

The Kiln previously told this paper that it held a public-wide consultation where more than 300 people responded to an e-survey sent to 4,000 people.

They spoke to 65 people during a street survey and 40 “stakeholders” were also consulted, it claims.

“Eight months on from this name change and people are still outraged,” Mr Fisher added. “They need to come clean. We are not going away.”

A spokesperson for the Kiln declined to comment.

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