Theatre Porto (formerly Action Transport Theatre) opens its transformed building: a state-of-the-art theatre and new cultural centre for, by, and with children and young people.

On 10 August 2022, the doors of the new theatre and cultural centre in Whitby Park, Ellesmere Port
will open after a £2.8M development, funded by Cheshire West and Chester Council and Arts Council
The new venue will be the only specialist, purpose-built theatre and cultural centre for
children and young people in Cheshire and one of a small number across England.
The first of the public openings this August marks a new era for the company under its new name
Theatre Porto, which was decided on following consultation with local young people, based on the
ideas of child-centredness, place and playfulness.


Stacey, who grew up in Ellesmere Port, and who worked with the theatre as a young person,
sums up what this new theatre means: “It’s about it being local, It’s about community. It’s so nice for
the people of Ellesmere port to be able to own something and say, ‘this is really good and its ours.”
NEW! This contemporary performance space and cultural centre now houses: a state-of-the-art 150-
seat flexible auditorium for performances and film screenings; rehearsal rooms; workshop rooms; a
temporary gallery, spaces for artists and a new café with an outdoor terrace. It has the highest
quality technical facilities in sound, lighting and includes specialist equipment to broadcast National
Theatre Live screenings. There is also a 300-seat amphitheatre in Whitby Park open all year round,
and where Theatre Porto will host its’ Summer Programme of outdoor events, FREE for everyone to

FREE opening events are running from 10th to 20th August. A special extravaganza weekend on
Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 August, will include outdoor shows, walk-about performances, and
special events alongside the ‘Once Upon a Time…’ art installation and adventure trail, all FREE.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “I am so excited that the
wait is over, and the transformed Whitby Hall is ready to welcome audiences and performers again. I’ve
been following the work and I know how important this will be for the young people of Ellesmere Port and
across the borough