Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council is seeking a design team to expand the Pontardawe Arts Centre in south Wales
The multidisciplinary team chosen for the commission will explore a range of options to revamp the cultural venue – which occupies an early 20th-century W Beddoe Rees-designed former assembly hall – and create a new ‘small-scale, intimate’ 70-seat cinema.
The project aims to improve the visitor experience, artistic reach, financial stability, visibility, access and sustainability of the town centre arts centre, which first opened in 1996 and hosts a varied programme of drama, dance, comedy, music, entertainment and films. A feasibility study for the project has already been completed by De Matos Ryan.
In its brief, the council says it wants ‘to appoint a lead consultant team to undertake the further design of options identified by a design feasibility study (RIBA Stages 0-2) in support of a new build 70-seat cinema within the external yard adjacent to the existing building or within the existing building with relocation of displaced facilities in the new build extension.
‘In addition, the reconfiguration of internal areas is under consideration to facilitate an improved visitor experience and improve secondary income for the centre. The project is being supported by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council and the Arts Council of Wales and will provide Pontardawe Arts Centre with the basis for a future funding application and subsequent construction.’
Pontardawe Arts Centre occupies the former Pontardawe Public Hall and Institute which opened in 1909 in the centre of the historic iron and steel-manufacturing town which is around 12km north of Swansea in West Glamorgan.
The latest project will overhaul and expand the arts centre which comprises a small art gallery, a studio theatre, and a 450-capacity events space. A range of options for the regeneration of the venue have already been outlined in De Matos Ryan’s feasibility study.
The project will reconfigure the interior of the complex while also expanding activities into a neighbouring 140m² yard with the potential for development. The addition of a small-scale cinema is intended to widen the centre’s audiences and encourage younger people to attend events.
The deadline for applications is 2:30pm, 22 November.
How to apply
View the contract notice for more information
Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council
Tel: +44 1639763930