NEWS of the temporary closure of the Lyceum theatre in Crewe for the removal of asbestos, which was highlighted in the Chronicle last week, has triggered a flood of enquiries to its box office.
Theatre fans were keen to learn about the extent of the problem and any potential impact on the future programming of shows.
This week management stressed the showpiece venue, managed by Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council, would resume its normal programme of productions in September.
Throughout the works the box office, restaurant and bar will remain open to the public.
Manager Jane Ashcroft said: 'The theatre will close on May 15 as part of a programmed series of works to remove asbestos from borough buildings, including Nantwich Civic Hall.
'The asbestos is above the stage area and it will be removed following the Health and Safety Code of Practice.
'The work is scheduled to last six weeks, which means the auditorium can reopen early September, in time for the panto launch when the stars pose for publicity shots.
'At no time has there been any danger to the public. Asbestos in its dormant state presents no harm, but when tampered with safety measures have to put in place.
'The stage will be screened off to contain the works, removing any risk to visitors using the facilities.'
She added: 'Since the Chronicle front-page article last week, we have taken many calls from people wanting to know if the seats they have booked for shows are still valid and about the future of the theatre.
'On Wednesday we had people on the phone in tears and we would like to reassure them, and everyone else, all is well and the show will go on.'
The works, which will involve the complicated removal of rigging which moves scenery, have cut short the spring/summer programme, which usually ends in July.
They have been timed to take in the traditional theatre 'dark period' and not to clash with the autumn/winter programme, which features the Lyceum's biggest box-office draw, the annual pantomime.