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View of the entrance approach to the theatre
View through the glazed front elevation shows a hub of activity over three floors.
View of the main performance auditorium
View of the central atrium
Illustration of the Termodeck system

Illustration of the Termodeck system

Ground floor plan

Ground floor plan

East elevation


Concept arrangement

The Courtyard

Our innovative arts complex for this small cathedral town offered a strikingly fresh take on the theatre typology when it was completed in 1999. Its two performance spaces are acoustically sealed black boxes at the core of the building that is then wrapped around with a lightweight glass foyer shaded by external oak louvres. Today, the building is referenced in the Pevsner Guide to Herefordshire.

The competition-winning project can stage theatre, live performances, and cinema and has rehearsal and exhibition spaces as well as artists’ studios. Both performance spaces can deploy raked, semi-raked or fully flat floor seating. The building was also an early adopter of sustainable technologies, including a Termodeck system that maintains temperature without the use of expensive and energy consuming chillers.

Over 20 years since completion, we have revisited the building to accommodate increased use by the community. The new facilities, a café extension topped with open-air terrace seating and a new second-floor studio space, improve the visitor experience and echo the building’s original principles.

Client Herefordshire County Council
Location Hereford
Size 3,500 sq m
Status Completed 1999
Darren Barbier
Simon Pearson