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Bennetts' Glasgow Citizens Theatre revamp bags £4.9m funding boost

Bennetts Associates revamp of the Citizens Theatre in Glasgow has received a £4.9million funding boost from the Heritage Lottery Fund

The funding announcement brings the 135-year-old theatre another step closer to its revamp.

Supported by Glasgow City Council, Bennetts’ project will renovate the Citizens Theatre’s Gorbals home, improving its rehearsal spaces, public areas, learning facilities and administrative offices.

The Grade B-listed building – used as a venue since 1878 – retains many of its original Victorian features but has received several small-scale extensions since Citizens Theatre took over the space in 1945.

The twentieth century additions to the building will be removed and replaced as part of the scheme.

The exterior of the building will also be revitalized with statues of Shakespeare, Burns and the four Muses, originally from the roof of the 1878 building, adorning a new façade.

Colin McLean, head of the Heritage Lottery Fund said: ‘The Citizens Theatre is held in great affection in Glasgow and far beyond although I don’t think anyone would disagree that it has seen better days.

‘We are delighted to give our initial support to a project which will bring those better days back. We have a shared vision of the Citz becoming a place where friends can gather for a coffee, enjoy outstanding performances, learn about the performing arts, and discover the wonderful working heritage behind its scenes. It will reaffirm people’s pride in the Citizens Theatre and in their community.’

Alasdair Gordon, associate director at Bennetts Associates’ Edinburgh office, added: ‘The theatre’s heritage is at the centre of our design proposals, and will be revealed in new ways alongside much needed new foyer, rehearsal, education and studio spaces.

‘All parties involved have a shared vision to create a landmark building for the community and this vital funding brings us one step closer to realising that vision.’

Bennetts Associates saw off competition from Page\Park, John McAslan, Malcolm Fraser, Haworth Tompkins and cr8 Architects with RHWL to win the high-profile job back in February last year.

Work on the scheme is expected to start in Autumn 2016.

Previous story (AJ 19.02.13)

Bennetts cast in leading role for Glasgow Citizens Theatre revamp

Bennetts Associates has been chosen to redevelop Glasgow’s world-famous Citizens Theatre

The Edinburgh and London-based practice beat an impressive shortlist comprising Page\Park, John McAslan, Malcolm Fraser, Haworth Tompkins and cr8 Architects with RHWL to win the high-profile £6.5 million job.

The appointment comes two years after Bennetts Associates completed its £112.8 million transformation of the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Supported by Glasgow City Council, the latest project renovates the Citizens Theatre’s Gorbals home, improving its rehearsal spaces, public areas, learning facilities and administrative offices.

Glasgow City Council funded a feasibility for the project and will work the architect and theatre company to take the project forward to RIBA stage B.

The Grade B-listed former His Majesty’s Theatre building – used as a venue since 1878 – retains many of its original Victorian features but has received several small-scale extensions  since Citizens Theatre took over the space in  1945 and is now in need of repair.  

Alasdair Gordon, associate director at Bennetts Associates’ Edinburgh office, said: ‘From breathing new life into the wonderful Victorian auditorium to providing new rehearsal, education and studio spaces, this ambitious project will transform the experiences of  visitors, staff and performers and will secure the future of one of Scotland’s leading producing theatres.’

Citizens Theatre artistic director Dominic Hill said: ‘My ambition is to have a building that reflects the Citizens’ reputation for contemporary interpretations of classic texts, while respecting the theatre’s important heritage.’

Bennetts Associates' scheme to redevelop Glasgow’s Citizens Theatre

Bennetts Associates’ scheme to redevelop Glasgow’s Citizens Theatre - click to view annotations

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