The builders who were restoring the Corn Exchange and Studio Theatre have gone bust.
The council has taken back the site and made it secure following the news that R Durtnell & Sons Ltd has ceased trading.
It says it is still committed to completing the £22 million refurbishment of the theatre buildings and will now be “exploring practical options” for the essential restoration works as soon as possible.
Since construction work began in February 2017, the project has experienced several unforeseen issues on the historic site. A Quaker burial ground was uncovered in August 2017, with human remains excavated by a team of archaeologists, and structural issues have been discovered with the Corn Exchange’s 200-year old wooden frame and roof trusses.
The revamp includes a Corn Exchange viewing gallery, a dedicated creative space for workshops and rehearsals, and a new street-facing café opening out onto New Road.
The £22 million project includes principle funding from Arts Council England (£5.8m), National Lottery Heritage Fund (£4.9m), as well as significant commitments from Coast to Capital and Brighton & Hove City Council.
Major support from private contributions includes a number of charitable trusts and foundations and individual donors as well as fundraising, including a community campaign, The Build Brighton Dome community appeal.
This has secured over £130,000 so far and each pound is match funded by The Roddick Foundation.
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