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REVAMP: Historic cinema redevelopment to begin this spring following capital kickstart award

REVAMP: Historic cinema redevelopment to begin this spring following capital kickstart award

Image: Hyde Park Picture House

Historic cinema redevelopment work on the Hyde Park Picture House is set to begin this April, thanks to a successful £285,600 Capital Kickstart Fund award from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the government’s Culture Recovery Fund. 

Combining vital restoration work with the creation of new accessible facilities, the cinema’s Picture House Project habeen on pause for the past 10 months due to the pandemic but will now proceed as planned, with completion expected in May 2022.

The multi-million-pound scheme will safeguard the cinema’s nationally significanheritage, including repair and conservation of its unique gas-lamps, iconic Burmantofts tiled façade, original terrazzo flooring and Grade II listed exterior lamppostThe introduction of new ramped entrance, accessible toilets, an expanded foyer and new 52 seat basement screen also means the cinema’s capacity and accessibility will be greatly improved.

Designed by award-winning architects Page\Park and engineering specialists Buro Happoldthe project will take 13 months to complete and is being delivered by Triton Construction, with support from Gardiner & Theobald and Avison Young. During this time the Picture House will continue to screen films in venues across Leeds as part of its On the Road off-site film programme, which began last year but is currently on hold until restrictions ease

Established to support capital projects which have been negatively affected by Covid-19, the Capital Kickstart Fund is administered by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and forms part of the government’s wider £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund

News of this funding follows a £2.3million National Lottery Heritage Fund grantawarded to the Picture House Project 2018, as well as crucial support from Leeds City Council, the Garfield Weston Foundation, the British Film Institute and others. Later this year the Picture House plans to launch new community fundraising campaign, asking audiences to help raise the final amount required to complete the project.

  Wendy Cook, Head of Cinema at the Hyde Park Picture House, said: After a challenging period of prolonged uncertainty, we’re over the moon that work on The Picture House Project is finally about to begin. 

"Not only will this project revitalize and safeguard a building that so many of us love, but it will allow the cinema to become a more inclusive venue, welcoming new audiences thanks to an expanded film programme, huge improvements to accessibility and new community-focused activity for visitors young and old. 

Mark Johnston, Lead Architect at Page\Park, said:  Since we first began working with the cinema in 2016, we’ve come to learn why this little Edwardian Picture House is so cherished by so many

"As architects who specialise in renewing heritage buildingsour aim, every step of the way, is to preserve the cinema’s history and character which we know are so important, whilst sensitively introducing new elements"

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