ISSUED ON BEHALF OF TEES MUSIC ALLIANCE
Work to increase the size of a much loved live music venue in Stockton Town Centre will begin next week.
The Georgian Theatre in Green Dragon Yard is being expanded into the Council owned building next door which was formerly the Courtyard Hotel.
Music charity, Tees Music Alliance (TMA) in partnership with Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, are carrying out the exciting redevelopment which will see the capacity of the premises increase from 200 to 300 and much needed bar and toilet space created.
Once complete, the Georgian Theatre will open more frequently and provide a daytime café/bar.
Director of Tees Music Alliance, Paul Burns said: “After spending so long developing these plans, it’s hard to believe that it’s actually all beginning to happen. It’s an exciting time for us - and we’re actually really impatient to get the new venue back in our hands!
“The designs from DKS are fantastic - people are going to be blown away when they come into the new venue and see how they’ve managed to join these two great old buildings together to make an exciting new space.
“We’re delighted that F Parkinson Ltd are about to kick off with the building work and we’re keen to see how it all progresses.”
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Arts, Leisure and Culture, Councillor Norma Wilburn, said: “The live entertainment scene is a major part of Stockton Town Centre. Countless residents and visitors already enjoy the many live comedy, theatre and music performances which take place throughout the town at ARC, the Georgian Theatre and at the many events held in the town centre as part of our busy events programme.
“The expansion of the Georgian Theatre will mean Stockton can attract more of the kind of artists that appeal to residents and visitors from far and wide and this, combined with the restoration of the Globe Theatre, will help make Stockton a thriving and popular hub for entertainment.”
DKS Architects have been appointed to design the revamped building and F Parkinson Ltd are carrying out the refurbishment. Businesses in the area will remain open as usual throughout the works.
The venue will remain open until the autumn when it will need to temporarily close to allow the major redevelopment to continue ahead of the upgraded Georgian Theatre opening its doors early next year.
The Council has allocated funding towards the refurbishment of the former Courtyard Hotel from Stockton’s Grants for Heritage Buildings scheme, which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
Image shows artist’s impression of what the bar may look like - created by DKS Architects.