A historic Coventry building could be in line for a modern, multi-purpose makeover to celebrate its 90th birthday. Prestigious architect Robert Davies has been invited to transform Coventry Central Hall, in Warwick Lane, into a ‘vibrant and welcoming venue’ where artists and people from all walks of life in Coventry can feel safe.
The plans include a new permanent café area, arts and events spaces, open-plan office spaces for small business, key improvements to the main concert hall and a new self-contained and fully accessible community centre to the rear. An opportunity to create a rooftop bar/cafe with stunning views across the city has also been identified.
A remodelling of the front elevation and atrium spaces, to ‘greatly improve its appearance’ whilst creating a more accessible entry point, has also been drawn up. The striking renovation proposal for CCHall, originally built as a worshipping space, community centre and performance venue for over 800 guests, is waiting for local authority approval.
Robert Davies said: “Central Hall is a wonderful building and valuable cultural venue, and the proposed changes will help to enhance its role as an important public building and cultural centre for the people of Coventry.” Rev. Stephen Willey said the bold plans were all about serving the people of Coventry.
“We value every person regardless of their age, gender, ethnicity or anything else,” he said. “We also hope the CCHall can become a creative space for artists and all people to exploit their potential and artistic talent.”
A series of arts activities for the public, under the banner Art Summer Time, are being held as part of the building’s 90th birthday celebrations on Sunday. Pet Service welcomed all animals for a cheerful party and on May 12 a rearranged Christmas Cabaret will be staged ‘to warm ourselves up to celebrate the joyful day’.
The five UK City of Culture artists in residence at the Hall will deliver music, digital arts and poetry and different workshops are being arranged for children and the elderly. Emilie Lauren Jones, Coventry poet laureate, said: “Central Hall offers a great, accessible space for community groups to meet.
“I have enjoyed running a series of poetry workshops there as well as several one-off workshops. Developing the building’s outward visibility will encourage others to discover the warmth and welcome on offer.”