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Doncaster’s new venue is the tops

Hats were raised this week to celebrate the completion of the roof on Doncaster’s new £20 million performance venue.

Dignitaries from the partners involved in the project were photographed with top hats in front of the impressive venue to mark the topping out ceremony.

Mayor of Doncaster, Peter Davies, said: “This is an important milestone for Doncaster’s new venue which is changing the skyline in Waterdale and helping to rejuvenate this part of town. You can now visualise its performance spaces which will make it another major attraction for our residents and visitors to the town to enjoy.”

Cluny Macpherson, Regional Director, Arts Council England: “What a brilliant day. Doncaster people have the right to make and see art of the very highest standard, just as much as anyone in Leeds or London or Paris or New York. I am delighted the Arts Council has invested in this building and can’t wait to come back next year and be inspired by what happens inside."

Dan Needham, Regional Director, Muse Developments said: “We are delighted to witness the topping out of the new performance venue which provides the cultural focus for Doncaster’s £300m Civic & Cultural Quarter scheme. We have already marked the successful completion of the refurbished multi-storey car park and new public square and the striking civic offices are nearing completion. We look forward to celebrating the finished performance venue in spring 2013.”

Keith Shivers, Regional Director, VINCI Construction UK, Building Division – North East, said: “This ceremony highlights the fantastic progression of the project and VINCI Construction UK, Muse Developments and Doncaster City Council working together to execute the multi-purpose venue to the highest standard."

Margaret Hunt, Chair of Doncaster Performance Venue Limited, said: “To finally see the longed-for new performance venue become a reality is something for us all to rejoice in and to feel a great sense of civic pride. There are people who have worked tirelessly over many years in pursuit of this venue and for it to come to fruition is a fitting reward for their determination and enthusiasm.”

VINCI Construction UK is over half way through the two year contract which started in September 2011. The structural steel frame and concrete frame of the fly tower and main auditorium is complete as well as the brick work, block work and precast cladding panels.  The mechanical and electrical installations, plastering, fit-out works and mesh cladding to the fly tower are now in progress. 

The focal point of the soon to be named venue will be the unusual box shaped main entrance that leads visitors from Sir Nigel Gresley Square into the 4,625sqm building. Its sleek design features a floor-to-ceiling glass façade that allows people to see inside.

Once inside, visitors will enjoy a wide range of spaces and facilities that include a 620 seat theatre, kitted out to accommodate touring shows, a 200 seated or 400 standing flexible space ideal for live music and smaller productions, modern dance and drama studios, various educational and rehearsal spaces that will double up as meeting and conference rooms, a light and spacious foyer area and a lively café bar which will enjoy superb views out onto the public square.

The venue will be a world-class dynamic cultural hub for the communities of Doncaster and the region.  The wide-ranging programme of events and activities will build upon the success of Doncaster’s thriving cultural scene with a national and international perspective.  It will offer something for everyone to experience and become the pride of Doncaster.

The venue, which should be completed in spring 2013, is an important part of the new £300m Civic and Cultural Quarter and has been supported financially by Arts Council England. It was designed by specialist theatre architects, Arts Team RHWL.

The CCQ project is supported financially by the European Union, as part of the European Regional Development Fund’s support for the region’s economic development through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme.

For more information on the venue go to:


Photograph from left to right: Ben Shearman (VINCI Construction UK), Margaret Hunt (Doncaster Performance Venue Limited), Peter Davies (Mayor of Doncaster), Dan Needham (Muse Developments) and Cluny Macpherson (Arts Council England)