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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett
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© Valerie Bennett

Royal & Derngate Theatre

Northampton has two theatres, the exquisite, tiny and Grade II-listed Royal, designed in 1884 by C. J. Phipps, and the Derngate, which RHWL designed in the 1980s. 

The Northampton Theatres Trust has come back to RHWL’s Arts Team to improve various points, such as centralizing the foyers and introducing a ‘creativity centre’ for impromptu and informal happenings, as well as improving back-of-house facilities for staff and workshops. Most importantly this reconstruction of its context will help the Royal to re-establish its identity. 

The principal additions are to the foyer and managing the interface between old and new structures is always awkward, but fortunately Arup’s archive yielded up original drawings. The result is a dramatic triple-height space formed by glulam ‘boomerangs’ covered in copper cladding. New walkways give views into its various levels as well as improved access to Derngate and meeting DDA requirements.

Delicate renovation of Northampton's two existing theatres - one Victorian, one modern

LOCATION
Northampton, UK
CLIENT
Northampton Theatres Trust
ARCHITECT
RHWL Arts Team
PROJECT VALUE
£ 8.8 million
COMPLETION
2006