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Conran to rescue Brighton's landmark Embassy Court building

The collapse of Brighton's West Pier has prompted a £5 million restoration of nearby Embassy Court, designed in 1935 by Wells Coates.

Conran & Partners has won the job of restoring all 70 flats, a roof terrace and ground-floor shops of the Grade II* concrete block near the doomed pier.

'The collapse of the West Pier has given the project added impetus, ' said practice director Paul Zara. 'The area is becoming noted for bold new designs such as Gehry's towers. But it's important not to lose the fine architecture that's already here, and to let this go beyond repair would be to waste the best 20th century building in Brighton.'

The project may incorporate an exhibition about the building and its Canadian architect, Zara said. A cafe is also proposed, along with the restoration of a show apartment to its original state for weekend letting.

Sir Terence Conran, the firm's chairman, said: 'I have known and loved the building for many years. It's in a terrible state, but we are confident we can give Brighton back this landmark.'

Conran & Partners is drawing up a restoration strategy for the building's owner, Bluestorm, and could start the one-year restoration in the new year, said Zara. The design team includes the building's original engineer, FJ Samuely & Partners.

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