Chester's Storyhouse nears completion: See our latest sneak peak images inside £37m building

Reporter:

Neil Bellis

New pictures of Storyhouse show the progress being made on the ambitious £37 million project which is due to open in the spring.

The Leader was given a sneak peak of the progress the new theatre/library and cinema was making just before the builders took a break for Christmas. 

In the former main entrance of the Odeon cinema, the doors and terazzo floors are in with wooden panelling going up on the walls. 

Work is continuing on the complicated wiring for the cinema, but that is in the later stages and the projector, screen and seats aren’t too far away from being installed.

Work stations have been installed in a lot of the library area – which runs throughout the complex – and the cafe has been fitted with a generous bar area. 

The art deco ceilings, which were an iconic part of the old Odeon, have been repaired and redecorated. 

The new staircase, which is in the centre of the building and connects the old part of the Odeon building to the new, has begun to be painted – white when going into the old building, red when going into the new.

The most progress seems to have taken place in the main theatre with all of the rigging used to move scenery fully installed. 

The first seats have been put in place in the upper circle with circle seats to be installed in January. 

The studio theatre is almost complete with acoustic doors currently being installed before the bleacher style seating arrives to make the space a flexible performance area. 

The upstairs bar has also been finished. 

Much of the building still remains shrink wrapped to protect the final finish as there is still a large amount of work to do on the building before the first curtain up on May 11. 

There is still a large gap where windows will be installed, which is currently open to the elements to allow cranes to come in and out of the building.

The building is expected to be completed in March or April. 

The building firm, Kier, will then do a phased hand over to Storyhouse staff and work with them ahead of the official first show – to make sure they know how to use the building properly. 

See full story in the Chester Leader

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