Room Hire


The Art House is a unique, informal and welcoming venue ideal for groups, workshops, meetings, film screenings, music events and fundraisers.  We are proud to be a space with high standards of ethics – from where we source our food to the furniture!

A hire charge usually applies for using the space, however this gives you exclusive use of the area you have booked as well as the option to publicise your event via our networks, if possible.

All fees go directly into the running of our nonprofit venue, providing a unique, community run meeting space for Southampton & the wider area, supporting artists and promoting ethical lifestyles.

Groups & individuals can hire space at The Art House, provided this meets our aims and objectives.  Unlike commercial businesses, our main aim as an organisation is not to make money but to add to our creative & community programme, and so some hire of the space would not be appropriate.  

Whilst we can book tables for parties who are having a meal, we cannot guarantee a table or space for other non-hirers, especially at busy times.  We expect all groups who are publicising their meeting here to let us know and make the appropriate hire arrangements with us.

We do not hire space for party political events, or to religious groups, who are using the activity to recruit new members or limiting participation to members of their political party or religious group.

All use of The Art House is subject to meeting our aims and objectives and is entirely at the Director’s discretion.

General Information about the space

The Art House is a lively, informal community space which is most suited to creative activity and more relaxed events.  We are entirely staffed by volunteers and furnished with reclaimed furniture and equipment.  We offer a very different kind of meeting space to a more well-equipped, formal space such as a hotel conferencing room and our rates reflect this!

We are a city centre venue and so there is background noise from the road outside and from other people visiting us..  As we are all volunteers here, and our room hire rates are well below the average for a city centre venue.  You are generally expected to set up yourself and to leave rooms as you find them although our helpful crew will assist as much as they can.

Please note

  • The Hirer has responsibility for publicity, handling money, dealing with enquiries, providing materials etc.
  • We will be thrilled to publicise the event for you on our programme of events, provided we are given the information in plenty of time. Please let us know if you would like us to do this and send us a ‘blurb’ and image to include, plus any other good stuff we can share with our networks.
  • The Hirer pays a fixed amount, agreed in advance, to use the space.
  • A non-refundable deposit of 50% may be required to secure your booking.

Other info

Sale of food and refreshments is one of the main ways in which The Art House pays the rent and stays open! 

It is generally not possible for participants to bring their own food (with the exception of food for babies or those with severe allergies, or strict religious requirements) to events – we can cater for your budget, please contact us for more details.  If you do arrange to bring your own food, or bring food for babies, please note that strictly no meat or fish may be consumed on the premises.  

Spaces which are available to hire are:-

The Grove

Suitable for groups of up to 17, depending on the activity, this is a quirky space on the first floor, ideal for workshops or meetings.  Facilities include tables, chairs and comfy sofas!   This space has what we affectionately refer to as ‘mood lighting’ so may not be suitable for some activities which require bright lights.

The Grove is available in the evenings after our opening hours, and on some Saturdays during the day.

We are able to negotiate a ‘Magic Hat’ hire of the Grove with some groups, or a small hire charge will apply.

The Gallery

Suitable for groups of up to 35, depending on the activity, this space is great for classes and workshops, as well as larger meetings.    The Gallery is available during our opening hours and in the evenings.  Noisy activities are not possible when the café is open though!

There is a flipchart which you can use when you hire the Gallery, however you must bring your own paper & pens.

The Gallery is only available for exclusive use by payment of a set room hire fee – see below for rates.  There is a PA, projector & screen which are hireable at an additional rate.

Please note that if your activity is likely to ‘spill out’ from the gallery area, or requires quiet, you will need to hire the whole 1st Floor.

All of the above spaces can be hired for meetings, workshops, talks, film showings, photography and film shoots.  We do not usually hire the space for private parties unless to a partner organisation.

None of the spaces are 100% private and we do not feel that the Art House is suitable in general for groups which are dealing with confidential issues, or where people attending may be feeling particularly vulnerable.  We are a family friendly space, but not suitable for children-only activities.

Our opening hours are:-

Tues  11am – 10pm
Weds 11am – 10pm
Thurs 11am – 10pm
Friday 11am – 10pm
Saturday 12 – 10pm
Sunday 12 – 5pm

We are closed on Mondays and a full day hire rate would apply to use the space.

Accessibility information

The ground floor is wheelchair accessible with a level entrance and wide front door. 

There is a bell to ring for assistance in opening the front door if needed. The toilet is on the ground floor, although we do not yet have disabled toilet facilities The first floor is accessible via a wide staircase with a banister.

Booking the space

You will generally need to give us a minimum of 2 weeks notice if you want to hire the space. 

Safety and Security

For safety and security reasons, a trained duty co-ordinator will need to be on site at all events.  The organiser will be briefed on our fire safety procedures by the Duty Co-ordinator, and has a responsibility to pass this information on to people attending your workshop/event. 

Hire charges for 2018:-

(all prices include VAT at 20%)

Exclusive use of The Art House      £235 per evening/£495 per day
(Monday daytime/evening or Sunday evening only)

Use of the whole upstairs + PA + sound engineer
for an evening (6 – 11pm) £235

Use of the whole upstairs + PA + projector, no sound engineer
for an evening (6 – 11pm) £150

Gallery only £25.00 per hour for a minimum of 2 hours

Grove £15 per hour for a minimum of 1 hour (evenings only)

Whole 1st floor £45 per hour for a minimum of 2 hours

PA system, projector and screen for film showings + £15 per hour

PA system for live music + £10 per hour

Sound engineer/tech support for film showings or performances + £35 per hour (includes PA/mics etc / projector & screen)

If you are using the space to film, a £8.00 per hour surcharge applies

For film showings, talks, and other events which ‘spill out’ or require quiet, the whole upstairs rate will apply

Hire charges include room setup.  The room will need to be put back as found and all rubbish removed at the end of your session, or an additional charge may apply

Hire includes 30 minutes setup and 30 minutes packup time, use of the flipchart (please bring your own paper though!).

All of the above hire charges are without catering.  If you need catering, please discuss this with us as we may be able to negotiate a lower room hire charge depending on your requirements.


Catering – these prices are a general guide only, please discuss your specific requirements with us on booking. All food is vegetarian, most ingredients are organic and we are happy to cater for vegans and any other specific dietary requirements. We can also sell food and drink directly to participants in our cafe, during our usual opening and serving hours.

All prices include VAT at 20%

Coffee, tea and fruit juice +£2.90 per participant

Biscuits and fruit +2.90 per participant

Canapés +6.90 per participant

Simple cold buffet (1 savoury choice, 2 salads, corn chips) with tea, coffee and fruit juice +£12.60 per participant

Hot buffet (hotpot style dish, rice, 2 salads) with tea, coffee and fruit juice +£15.90 per participant