Changes to the entrance to Preston’s Guild Hall have been given unanimous backing by Preston city council’s planning committee.Advertisement
The proposals from new owner Simon Rigby would see two escalators up either side of the venue.
Councillors all voted in favour of the Rigby proposal which would also see a new Italian restaurant open in what is currently the Preston Tourist Information Centre.
Simon Rigby, who runs the Villa Group which is buying the venue from the city council, said: “We are thrilled that Preston City Council have supported our vision to get the Guild Hall back to being the cultural centre of Preston.
“The Renaissance plans are the start of our plans to make The Guild Hall the beating heart at the centre of Preston and something that all Prestonians can be proud of.”
Seb Salisbury, the Frank Whittle Partnership architect behind the plans, said: “The Guild Hall has huge untapped potential in terms of both its enviable location and bold architectural form.
“The venue is close to the heart of many Prestonians and we have created a design that will breathe new life into what has become a rather tired building.
“One of the main objectives of the scheme is to create a defined and symmetrical entrance point for the building that connects more with the public at street level.
“The scale and form of the new entrance atrium will help to draw people from across the city centre with the intention of creating a cultural hub in Preston and a leading entertainment venue in the North West.
“The external landscaping strategy has been designed to create an inviting and interesting public space, which may also incorporate a ‘walk of fame’ paying homage to the huge variety of acts to have performed at the Guild Hall over the last 40 years.”
In July it was announced the city council would be selling the venue and transfer is due to take place around October 20 according to city council sources – after this date work can start on changes to the entranceway.
The plans for the venue will see six trees removed from the front of the venue.
A giant plasma screen is set to be erected facing onto Lancaster Road.
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