Battersea Arts Centre

In 2011, erect architecture was shortlisted to make proposals for the £3.5M refurbishment and remodelling of the Battersea Arts Centre. Housed in the former Town Hall, the ambition of BAC’s capital project was to create a 21st century theatre in a 19th century listed building.
It was an imperative to explore the future of space for theatre and to consider the function theatre spaces can play in their community, twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.
The BAC’s capital project had two main funders: Arts Council England was particularly interested in the idea of a 21st century space for theatre. The Heritage Lottery Fund was particularly interested in refurbishing a 19th century Town Hall and maintaining this precious asset for future generations. The objectives of the project were to develop a home for creativity, improve the audience’s experience, create an environment for performance throughout the building, develop key spaces and sites for specific purposes and importantly also to restore the worn original structure and areas of significant heritage interest.
During the feasibility we made proposals for remodelling and refurbishing the Town Hall whilst in operation. The BAC’s method of playgrounding, using performances to test proposed spatial alterations, was the underlying principle of the proposals.
The feasibility also considered the potential use of adjacent public realm to bring alive the mission of BAC and provide a community as well as a BAC facility.
Location: London
Client: Battersea Arts Centre
Cost: £3.5M
Status: Shortlisted competition entry
Theatre Consultant: Anne Minors Performance Consultants
Heritage Consultant: CgMs
Mechanical and Electrical Engineers: Max Fordham LLP
QS: Huntley Cartwright