Fairfield plans unveiled

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Croydon Council has revealed details of its plan to transform Fairfield Halls into a cultural hub.

The new development will take in Croydon College and the surrounding College Green and will see the building of a new college, concert and arts venue. Hundreds of new homes, shops and restaurants will also be built. 

The venue’s 1,800 seat Concert Hall will remain but will be fully refurbished to include new seating and modernised backstage and servicing areas. The rest of the 1962 building, including the 755 seat Ashcroft Theatre, will be refurbished to contain flexible performance and arts spaces.

A new mezzanine-level restaurant is also planned, alongside bar and seating areas on the ground floor leading to outside areas on the transformed College Green public square.

The plan will mean that Fairfield Halls will be closed but no time table has been set. Croydon council has not yet revealed a figure for the development cost.  The council’s controversial sale of its Riesco Chinese ceramics in 2013 raised £8m towards the redevelopment. 

Cllr Tony Newman, leader of Croydon Council, said the changes are designed to put Croydon “well and truly on the cultural map.” He added, “Croydon is proud of Fairfield’s heritage but it’s time to look to the future. This ambitious borough wants to provide a cultural and educational offer to rival London’s best.”

The project team includes Rick Mather Architects, a practice known for its work on the Royal Festival Hall and the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith.

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