Having already completed a viability study for the Kings Theatre, Portsmouth, Pritchard Architecture was appointed in early 2019 to develop the proposals into a feasibility study. The project is looking to develop three shops located adjacent to the theatre to create a restaurant/café, studio spaces and additional office space.

Located in Southsea, The Kings Theatre was opened in 1907 and has been running under various ownership since then. The theatre is currently owned by Portsmouth City Council and has been leased to the Kings Theatre Trust since 2003. The council also own no. 24, one of the three shops facing Albert Road, and have just purchased no. 26. The Trust already own the freehold to no. 28 meaning the entire site will be under the leasehold/ ownership of the Trust.

Kings Theatre and the adjacent shops are Grade II* Listed. The Theatre was designed by Frank Matcham who alongside his colleagues B. Crew and W.G.R Sprague were responsible for over 200 theatres across Britain between 1890 and 1915. Matcham went on to be highly respected by theatre owners and managers. The adjacent shops pre-date the theatre, and it is not clear why the theatre was built around them as all other buildings on the site were cleared.

We have completed an initial viability study which was used to help secure more funding to develop the scheme. This has led to us now being appointed to develop the project further into a feasibility study. The feasibility study will look in more detail at the development of the three existing shops to create a restaurant/café, studio spaces and additional office space with connections back to the theatre which would help secure a longer term sustainable future for the theatre.

Project Details

  • Client: Kings Theatre Trust

  • Designation: Grade II* Listed Building

  • Funder: Portsmouth City Council

  • QS: Michael Edwards Consultants Limited

  • Structural Engineer: Marbas

  • M&E Engineer: Chapman BDSP

Clare Dawe