A WORLD record-breaking theatre in Great Malvern is in need of a new owner to help bring it back to its former glory.

Malvern Hills District Council is inviting expressions of interest to purchase Edith Walk Theatre, better known as the Theatre of Small Convenience.

The unique venue, which seats 12 people, entered the Guinness Book of World Records in 2002 as the world’s smallest commercial theatre.

The council is encouraging individuals and organisations that can demonstrate they are able to provide a fully-funded and sustainable use for the property to apply.

Cllr John Gallagher, portfolio holder for resources at the district council, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to own a piece of history.

"Not only is it a unique building in Great Malvern but it is also world record-breaking.

"It is essential that the new owner has a comprehensive business plan for the theatre and understands the importance of sustaining the site.

"Please send in an application if you are interested."

The theatre has been closed since 2017 after founder Dennis Neale retired and it was leased to Warwickshire College Group until 2022.

It suffered some fire damage in 2021 but has been cleaned up and made safe, remaining under the ownership of the district council.

Fire crews had been called after flames were spotted by someone returning from an early morning walk over the hills.

The building then had an EPC rating of G which is the lowest possible rating in a review of a property’s energy efficiency.

The theatre is less than half the size of the previous small world record holder, the Piccolo Theatre in Hamburg, Germany.

Its name comes from the building's original purpose, having been converted from a derelict Victorian gentlemen's public convenience to open in 1999. 

The theatre used to regularly host puppetry, professional and amateur actors, drama, poetry, storytelling and opera, becoming a regular venue of the Malvern Fringe Festival.

Expressions of interest from potential owners are asked to be returned to the district council no later than 12pm on January 22, 2024.

Anyone interested can visit www.malvernhills.gov.uk/consultations for more information on how to make an application.