The Spotlight Fund

As a charity putting on cultural and entertainment events, providing support to vulnerable people, and protecting part of our heritage, the Carnegie plays a vital role in the community across Workington and West Cumbria. Much of our work and events simply wouldn’t be possible without generous donations – both big and small – from our supporters.

The Spotlight Fund was set up to ensure we could continue providing a fantastic venue for many years to come. With monies raised through the fund we can continue to make our Carnegie the best it can be.

We have an ambitious target to raise £70,000 and every penny will go straight towards the work we do here, making sure you have a theatre and community hub the town can be proud of.

How it started

On the morning of Sunday 12th December 2021, a fire broke out in the Carnegie’s technical workshop destroying most of the lighting and sound equipment that enables us to run the many arts and entertainment events you enjoy.

Just as things were starting to look up post-lockdown, we suddenly needed to refocus a great deal of time and energy cataloging what was lost, and replacing and repairing what we could to put on our shows.

“It is a devastating blow for us given that we’re still seeing significantly lower audience numbers return to the theatre. This was going to be the year where we got back on our feet again. Not only is our future not yet secure but we also now have to raise funds to replace vital equipment we need in the theatre.”

Lee Martin-White, Chair of the Board of Trustees

That emphasised more than ever how we need to do more to continually invest in the Carnegie’s future by actively fundraising to maintain, replace and improve the venue and our equipment.

We’ve called the campaign the “Spotlight Fund” as one of the most significant losses in the fire was the destruction of our lights. We want the campaign to shine a light on everything the Carnegie offers to the community and ask for support to secure our future.

Running a theatre and community venue means continually replacing items that cost anything from £10 to £1,500 and up. If you can spare a penny or more, you’ll play an important part in ensuring the future of the Carnegie.

  • £30 will replace our glue gun, to help keeps those set details in place  
  • £90 buys us a jigsaw so we can craft new sets for our amateur groups
  • £35 pays for a new microphone stand so our talent can go hands-free
  • £600 covers one of the eight primary loudspeakers we need to get the theatre jumping and to hear our performers loud and clear
  • £475 buys a radio mic system so our actors can be heard without cables
  • £1600 secures a spotlight with LED technology. Lighting up our local schools and slashing our energy bills

How you can help


Donate directly to our Spotlight Campaign.

Add Gift Aid and we can claim an extra 25p for every £1 you donate at no extra cost to you.


Get in touch if you, your group, or your business would like to know more about sponsorship opportunities.

More ways to support the Carnegie

  • Shop and give – raise a free donation for us every time you shop online via The Giving Machine
  • Try your luck at the Allerdale and Lakeland Lottery – at least 60% from each ticket sold goes to support the Allerdale area, and there’s a chance to win the £25,000 jackpot every week!
  • Fundraise for the Carnegie through an activity or event of your own via Wonderful.org
  • Spread the news – share our campaign on social media.
  • Keep an eye out for future fundraising events.
  • Come and visit us – we have a wide range of shows and entertainment, and our café and bar are great places to relax over a drink or a meal.

We thank you for all of your support and kindness – it is very much appreciated by all of us at #TeamCarnegie.