Hammersmith Apollo Set to Have Major Facelift

Including external works, new lighting, seating and new facilities for wheelchair users

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The Planning Application and Associated Documents

Hammersmith Apollo

AEG Live Europe

Foster Wilson Architects


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Hammersmith's most famous venue, the Apollo is to receive a major facelift, including lighting, seating and additional facilities for wheelchair users.

H & F Council have approved an application by the owners of the owners, AEG Live Europe for alterations to the Hammersmith Apollo Theatre in Queen Caroline Street, including:

* external works comprising of repair and restoration of windows and brickwork

* internal alterations comprising of the replacement of existing bars and box office counters

* redecoration, new lighting, new seating, and access improvements comprising of additional wheelchair spaces within the auditorium and a new accessible WC. 

The improvements have been designed by architects Foster Wilson who say in their Design and Access statement: "As new owners of the Apollo Hammersmith, AEG Live and CTS are respectful of the building’s heritage, Grade II* Listing and therefore its local and national importance.

" They are therefore keen to respect and protect the building, however they are also firmly of the view that the building has been neglected and under invested, with a series of poorly considered and short term additions and alterations which have compromised the look and feel and, in some parts, the fabric of the structure.

" We foresee the key benefits as follows:

• to reinstate key areas of the building’s façade and envelope that
have become dilapidated through under investment and neglect;
• to introduce a clear and coherent signage strategy to the front of the
building allowing clear messaging to patrons and passers by whilst
also removing large areas of banner signage and thus revealing large
areas of the listed frontage;
• to remove a number of ill-considered additions to the building and to
reinstate in finishes and materials consistent with the original design;
• to improve both the number of spaces for disabled users and to
enhance the user experience for those patrons;
• to introduce a seating system which is consistent with the heritage of
the building as deployed in other similar buildings but which responds
to the needs of the day to day operations;
• to carry out general improvements and decoration to the fabric of the
building throughout that presents the building in accordance its listed
status and the operational needs.

The architects add: " For a major entertainment venue of this kind it is difficult and financially
unsustainable to close the building for extended periods to undertake the
works as a single operation.

" AEG/CTS therefore reserve the right to phase the works, as necessary, to minimise closure periods and spread the costs over more than one financial year."

The Hammersmith Apollo Theatre was building in 1932 as The Gaumont Palace Theatre. The original architect was Robert Cromie and the building is listed Grade II*. With a seating capacity of 3,500, it is one of London’s largest theatres.

June 14, 2013