Redevelopment works have started at Unity Theatre in Liverpool, which will see an £845,000 transformation of the Hope Place venue, designed by K2 Architects.
Vivark is the main contractor for the project and has taken over the building. The redevelopment is the first major work to be carried out since 1998, and will open up Unity Theatre’s spaces to a greater number, with major alterations being made to public spaces such as the entrance, foyer and first floor bar.
Improved soundproofing between Unity Theatre’s two performance rooms will allow both venues to be used together more often and, as a result, create more opportunities for work and artist development, as well as increasing revenue.
The renovation is due for completion in April.
An additional £60,000 in funding for the project has also been confirmed, with PH Holt Foundation and Garfield Western Foundation committing £10,000 and £50,000 respectively.
The donations follow an initial £435,000 investment from Arts Council England, £120,000 from Liverpool City Council, £30,000 from the Granada Foundation and £2,000 from the Ravensdale Foundation as well as over £20,000 in individual donations from Unity Theatre supporters.
Chris Bliss, chairman of Unity Theatre’s board and estate director at Liverpool ONE, said: “It’s incredibly exciting, after years of dreaming, scoping, fundraising and planning, to see the transformation of Unity Theatre set in motion. It means that in a matter months, we will see our collective vision of a 21st century theatre, innovatively designed by local architects K2, come to life. Once complete, Unity Theatre will be able to play an even bigger, more ambitious role in Liverpool, the region and beyond.”