Sutton’s theatres have been saved after a 10-year deal to take over the running of the Charles Cryer and Secombe theatres was secured.

Beri Juraic and Micha Colombo, as Sutton Theatres Trust (STT), will take over the theatres after their bid was approved on Thursday, January 15.

The soft handover will start in April and run through to October.

A spokesmen for STT said: “They realised they both had a dream, an idea to run a theatre in London.

“Micha read about the possible closures of Sutton’s theatres in the Sutton Guardian and they thought ‘this might be possible’.

“They really want to keep the theatres alive, have them work hard, supporting the community.”

The vision is to focus on community projects as well as classical and contemporary theatre, and big scale commercial dance and comedy events. Any changes to the existing provisions would be “around the edges”.

The pair have extensive experience in the industry.

Ms Colombo is a trained actor and director whose 2014 credits include Lazarus Theatre’s Our World at War, Theatrical Niche’s touring production of Lorca’s Blood Wedding, as well as her own writer-director work Woman in the Dunes.

Prior to that, she spent seven years as a brand strategist at advertising firm WPP. She has been a Carshalton resident since 2013.

Mr Juraic is a creative producer with more than 60 theatre shows to his name. He has previously managed two London theatre venues.

The spokesman said: “Everything will be the same, but things around the edges will change as they look to really challenge and interest people, as well as give them what they are used to.”

Although saved, and despite the backing of investors to provide funding in the early days, the theatres will still need to bring in enough paying punters as the deal requires the trust to pay market rent for the spaces. The only bid, the spokesman said, that included such an option.

Bids submitted by parties looking to take over the theatres individually were rejected.

Staff will be staying on, the spokesman said, and not only were there no plans to cut staff or bring in new people, but existing staff would be central to what the new owners hoped to achieve.

The spokesman said: “Their process involves a huge amount of fundraising, but equally to get more people involved in the local theatre groups.

“There is no point cutting everybody out, it would be a real waste of time.”

Sutton Theatres Trust was given the nod in a closed-door meeting of its environment and neighbourhood committee.

The council said financial details of the arrangement will remain secret until contracts are signed.

The announcement comes after months of uncertainty surrounding the theatres’ futures after Sutton Council said it would close them should nobody be found to take them over.

Wallington Hall will still close.

To contact Sutton Theatres Trust email: