Front elevation of Chester's new Storyhouse arts centre produced by Bennetts Associates
Front elevation of Chester's new Storyhouse arts centre produced by Bennetts Associates

Chester’s cultural centre named Storyhouse

Chester’s new £37m library and theatre, due to open at the end of this year, will be called Storyhouse. Until now the arts venue has been known by its project name, RE:NEW.

Operator Chester Performs has also changed its company name to reflect the building’s new identity.

New brand designed by creative agency True North

New brand designed by creative agency True North

Andrew Bentley, chief executive, said: “It’s a straightforward expression of the journey we have been on as a company, and where, together, we are going in this amazing new building. In time the name will of course become synonymous with our work, and we will be selling tickets under the Storyhouse brand from 17 March.”

Artistic director, Alex Clifton, added: “We will be running a building like no other. It needs a unique name to reflect its unique offer. This is a place to discover, make and share great stories. It’s a place to bring inspiring ideas to life. Storyhouse brilliantly captures and communicates the creative spirit of our integrated library, theatre and cinema.”

The news comes after an extensive search process led by Manchester brand agency True North, including a public consultation and extensive work with the centre’s stakeholders and partners, including Cheshire West & Chester Council, Arts Council England, and principal sponsor MBNA. Members of the public were invited to meet the brand designers and over 200 suggestions were submitted across two days of drop in sessions.

Cheshire West & Chester Council is investing over £30m in the scheme and managing its construction. Cllr Louise Gittins, cabinet member for culture, leisure and wellbeing, said: “I hope our residents will agree that Storyhouse is a wonderfully fitting name for a cultural centre that blends theatre, music, dance, literature and cinema.

“I have no doubt Storyhouse will itself prove a success story in the Council’s commitment to invest in inclusive leisure and culture to make our borough a great place to live and visit.”

The main contractor is Kier and the building was designed by Bennetts Associates, supported by Warrington-based Ellis Williams Architects during project delivery.

The new building incorporates a theatre which switches twice a year between an 800 seat proscenium space and 500 seat thrust festival stage, along with a 150 seat studio.  Storyhouse will stage home produced productions for 50% of the year, with the theatre presenting the best of the country’s touring companies during the principal touring season.

Your Comments

chester west and chester council. hangs
northwich out to dry with barons quay as 2nd phase of barons quay not going ahead
this is exactly one reason of many! why vale royal borough council should never of been amalgamated with cheshire west and chester council. the experience has been devastating for the town of northwich.
northwich residents always wanted to go with cheshire east council as we had stronger links with them and greater manchester region in general. since. cheshire west and chester council have taken over we have
1) lost our courts
2) a road network which was ok then cheshire west got there hands on it now its good for nothing!
3). 6000 houses approved for a victoria road network!
4) a new asda which has just blocked out our river views
5). 3 victorian town bridges which are on the verge of being put out of commission

To be honest i could go on but what cheshire west and chester council has done to our town is so devastating i feel like crying!

By northwich

Sounds like a 1970s Childrens programme,presented by Johnnie Morris.Better than HOME though,Manchester’s latest pretentious cluster of dreary cultural buildings.Who thinks of these name?.Someone who says,’can I get a cup of coffee’ rather than can I ‘have’ no doubt,is always looking busy and lives in Chorlton,because they can’t afford Islington.We also have the Firehouse now in Manchester.Excuse me,but do I now live in Milwaukee?

By Elephant

Storyhouse- better looking building than HOME. Slightly less rubbish name.

By Gene Walker

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