A HARTLEPOOL charity heralded the beginning of an exciting new era with the opening of bigger and better premises.
Red Dreams, which nurtures young people with a passion for the arts, is looking forward to helping twice as many talented youngsters at its new unit.
Located just a short distance from their old base in Whitby Street South, the new unit boasts everything creative young people need to express their talents whether it is in music, film-making or directing.
Red Dreams welcomed iTunes’ rock winners Don Broco and Mallory Knox to the grand opening yesterday.
Young people who work with the charity also got the chance to see the new facilities available to them.
Red Dreams was created in 2007 by parents Ian and Dawn McManus following the tragic death of their son Kyle from a brain tumour at just 16.
He had a great love of the arts and they wanted to support other young people with potential.
The new unit is three times the size of their old base and has two rehearsal rooms, three vocal rooms, two recording suites and media and computer suites.
Ian, 41, said: “It is absolutely fantastic. It is one of a kind, I think, in the North East and covers band rehearsals and recording and it encourages filmmakers, animators, producers and directors.
“The young people have challenged us all the way to become better at what we do and offer in terms of services, mentoring and technical equipment.
“The future for us is looking amazingly bright because we have a good foundation.
“It is only limited by the imagination of the people here.”
Red Dreams simply didn’t have enough space to accommodate all the young people, aged 11-24, that wanted to work with them and had a waiting list a year long.
Now it can cater for 200 people, which also includes their team of mentors who volunteer their expertise.
The charity’s first five years have proved extremely fruitful and shows no sign of slowing down in their new home.
Ian added: “We have got films in production that are going to be entered in the Royal Television Society Awards, people are writing original material, not to mention the many music festivals that people will be entering.
“Our new premises is going to be something hopefully that puts young people in a positive light and puts Hartlepool on the map.”