£12million fundraising drive to help create the next generation of Jedi

Daisy Ridley
Daisy Ridley

A school which has produced stars for Star Wars and Downton Abbey has started a new campaign to help form the actors of tomorrow.

Tring Park School for the Performing Arts hopes to raise £12million to improve and enhance its facilities. The cash will ensure that it remains at the forefront of creating opportunities for young people while protecting and preserving its history.

Alumni of the school, which caters for youngsters from eight to 18, include Daisy Ridley (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), Lily James (Disney’s Cinderella, Downton Abbey and War and Peace) and Jessica Brown Findlay (Downton Abbey).

School spokesman Miriam Juviler said: “Our first priority is to create more space for pupils to rehearse, perform, learn and live so we have designed a new building on campus that will have a large art studio, classrooms and workshops. We hope to start work on this after Easter 2017.

“The second priority is the construction of a new accommodation block with boarding space for 70 extra pupils, with plans to start work on this by early summer 2018.

“The third and final proposal is to build a new theatre that will not only be used by the school, but will also be available for the community. It will be a multi-purpose space that will host a range of activities, from frequent community events to theatre-in-the-round and larger West End-inspired productions.

“This new space will not replace the existing on-site, Markova Theatre, which will remain as a rehearsal and performance space.”