The Castlereagh Councillor said: “I welcome government funding for theatres locally. This funding for theatre improvements will boost Northern Ireland culturally and financially.
“More tourists will want use these improved facilities, therefore our tourism industry and economy will be strengthened by these developments.
“New ways of looking at society and understanding different points of view can be put forward by theatre.
“It is great that on top of the £9 million spend on the extension of the Grand Opera House, a number of theatres in this region will be provided with £20 million for improvements.
“As an audio describer for the blind and visually impaired at the Lyric Theatre, I know from first hand experience the drawbacks of the existing building, for people with disabilities and backstage for the actors, so I particularly welcome the funding which will enable the Lyric to build a 21st Century theatre.
“This funding will provide a great boost to the arts sector and will hopefully increase local interest in the arts.”