BAM Construction has secured a £5.3 million construction contract as part of a total £7 million project to redevelop Plymouth’s landmark Theatre Royal. The contractor, which has offices in the Devon city, will re-clad the building’s curtain walling and refurbish the front-of-house area including the box office and the restaurant. The project will also involve work on the backstage and basement areas, as well as new mechanical and electrical plant. It is designed to improve the theatre experience for visitors and reduce the carbon footprint of the building, ensuring a lasting legacy for the next generation of theatregoers in the South West. State-of-the-art catering facilities will be introduced, and the capacity of the restaurant increased. A creative learning space will be created in the basement for use in community outreach programmes. BAM will use local suppliers and sub-contractors where possible.
The contractor will also provide apprenticeships and work experience placements through its National Skills Academy for Construction programme, which is supported via local schools, colleges and Plymouth University. BAM is the first construction company in the South West to be given the NSAC status by industry training board ConstructionSkills. Construction manager Graham Kingdon said: ‘BAM is delighted to be working on another major landmark project in Plymouth.
‘We look forward to using our breadth of skills to improve the building for the local community, economy and environment. ‘This is an iconic theatre that we use ourselves as theatregoers – indeed the BAM social club went to the Theatre Royal to see Dick Whittington before Christmas.’ Jack Mellor, Theatre Manager at the Theatre Royal, said: ‘We are pleased to be working with BAM, who impressed us with their approach and their confidence that the very challenging programme of works could be completed on time.’ The main project works will take place from mid-April to September when the theatre will be closed. The theatre will reopen in September with the launch the national tour of War Horse. Some early work will start on site in February and some work in the non-public facing areas will be completed in October. The redevelopment project adds to BAM’s powerful Plymouth portfolio which now includes schemes such as Plymouth University Technical College, Plymouth Marine Academy and Plymouth All Saints Academy, all under construction.