Architects appointed for Worcester’s new arts centre

An artist’s impression of how the restored and reopened Scala Theatre and Corn Exchange could look An artist’s impression of how the restored and reopened Scala Theatre and Corn Exchange could look

Worcester City Council has taken an important step forward in the creation of a new performance arts and theatre venue in the northern part of the city centre, with the appointment of architects and consultants.

The City Council secured £17.9 million from the Government's Future High Streets Fund to revamp the area around Angel Place and Angel Street, and improvements are already underway to the pavements and environment of the area.

The appointments announced today will play central roles in transforming the Scala Theatre and Grade-II-listed Corn Exchange buildings into a performance arts venue for the city, alongside the broader revival of the area, including the currently empty building at 8 Angel Street, formerly a Co-op store.

Architects Burrell Foley Fischer have been appointed to design the new theatre and cultural hub, which will offer leading theatrical, music and performance facilities. The company has a strong track record in designing arts facilities, including the Hall for Cornwall in Truro, the Almeida Theatre in London, The Crucible in Sheffield, the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens, and many others.

Specialist theatre consultants Theatreplan have also been appointed to work on the project. With their previous work including Battersea Arts Centre, the Glasgow Citizens Theatre and Sydney Opera House, they bring a wealth of experience to the creation of a new arts centre within some of Worcester's most historic buildings.

The City Council has appointed Equals Consulting as project managers and cost consultants for this major initiative to stimulate economic growth at the northern gateway to the city centre. Their pedigree includes projects at the Royal Opera House, Natural History Museum and the British Museum, among a wide range of other work.

David Blake, Managing Director of Worcester City Council, said: "It's very exciting to be progressing this major investment in the northern part of the city centre. This project will stimulate economic growth in Worcester, creating a new city centre hub for theatre, music, comedy and more.

"The broader regeneration of the Angel Street and Angel Place area will also bring social, economic, and environmental benefits, alongside new living opportunities in the city centre and the enhancement of some of our city's most striking historic buildings."

The City Council has recently completed the acquisition of the Scala, following its purchase of the Corn Exchange and 8 Angel Street last year.

A planning application is expected to be submitted in the coming months. 

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