In 1961, the Association was started with a small enthusiastic group… whose main purpose is to raise technical standards in the theatre by collecting and making available information concerning theatre planning, stage machinery, lighting and sound equipment, acoustic, scenery construction, stage management and all aspects of presentation. The Association provides a forum for discussion among theatre technicians through the publication of a newsletter and through regular meetings…the Association is not a trade union nor does it confer on members any professional status.

From these early beginnings the Association’s membership rose to around 250 by the mid 60′s: 1970 stood at 400: Today the membership is around 1700 and rising.

The Association has special interest groups such as Safety, IT, Theatre Planning, Design & Archaeology . These groups have shaped the industry in a vital way with the their advice & publications. London & Regional branches regularly hold meetings where members have the opportunity to exchange opinions and information. The Association is now gearing itself up for the challenge of the turn of the century: to meet the demands for an independent and authoritative voice on standards, information and regulation.

Principles of the Association

  • To advise on safety, planning, good practice and enforcement.
  • To provide the best information and advice on safe working practices within the theatre industry.
  • To provide publications: Codes of Practice: Data Sheets:Journals.
  • To encourage pride at all times by enjoying and implementing good working practices.
  • To encourage technical education at all levels: provide In-service training and seminars.
  • To support the industry by networking information to members.
  • To provide a comprehensive building advice service.
  • Provide a comprehensive collection and dissemination of up to date information on technical matters.
  • Encourage exchange of information

The need for the ABTT Service

The greatest asset the ABTT has to offer is its independence and strength in membership; people who work in and care about a successful theatre industry.