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Blackpool may be new stage for V&A's theatre museum

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Blackpool's seemingly unstoppable bid to reinvent itself as the UK's architectural hotspot has taken another leap forward with the revelation that the V&A museum is considering moving its theatrical collection to the resort.

It is understood that the local council has been in discussions for months with the V&A to take the collected works, which are currently housed at the Theatre Museum in London's Covent Garden ( pictured), up North.

The news follows an official announcement by V&A chiefs that it intends to close the existing Theatre Museum in January after a £2.5 million Heritage Lottery Funding bid was turned down.

Although no exact site has been earmarked for the new building, the museum is believed to be considering a number of plots around the town and is carrying out an initial feasibility study.

However, the V&A may have competition from an increasing number of interested parties wanting to set up home close to the famous Golden Mile, including Daniel Libeskind, who has set his sights on Blackpool for an indoor rainforest project.

In a statement, V&A Director Mark Jones said: 'The V&A is committed to showing the theatrical collections to as wide an audience as possible. Blackpool has a strong theatrical and entertainment tradition and attracts millions of visitors a year.

'A new museum in Blackpool could provide a wonderful platform to tell the story of British theatre.'

The V&A was unable to confirm whether an architectural competition would be launched to design the new facility.

by Richard Waite

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