London’s theatre audience figures exceeded 14.3m with box office sales of over £644m in 2016 alone. While our West End playhouses may appear booming, their supply chain is under threat as the creative community that feeds this industry struggle to find affordable workspace in the capital. For example set designers and fabricators in the Old Kent Road, rehearsal spaces in Bermondsey, grassroots theatre organisations based in Hackney Wick and other post-industrial neighbourhoods face an uncertain future as their current workspaces are redeveloped for housing and other uses. Since 2001, 1035 hectares of London’s industrial land has been lost to non-industrial uses, directly affecting the provision of space used for cultural production. Without the budding actors, playwrights, costume makers, set builders and other creative technicians the magic world of the Theatre would not exist.


We propose bringing this ecosystem of the Theatre Arts together in one shared facility with the flexible, loose fit, industrial scale spaces needed to create and experiment. This self sufficient, permanent piece of cultural infrastructure will plug into the city’s creative sector helping London’s theatre industry continue to thrive and grow while bringing benefits to the wider community through outreach programmes with the neighbouring HMP Belmarsh and employment opportunities for locals.


Theatre Works will also act as a destination to promote and celebrate the Theatre Arts through education and public programmes. We have strategically chosen a site in an area undergoing rapid regeneration and Theatre Works aims to help manage this growth and act as a catalyst for positive change.


Theatre Works was our successful submission for the Cultural Strategy and Public Art category of the GLA ADUP2 framework, a panel of designers selected to encourage fresh thinking for design and building projects in London.


Turner Works