Grand Pavilion Redevelopment
Grand Pavilion, Porthcawl
The Grand Pavilion, Porthcawl’s much-loved theatre has been awarded £18m Levelling Up Funding from the UK Government, following a successful application by Bridgend County Borough Council working in close partnership with Awen Cultural Trust. The redevelopment of the Grand Pavilion represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity for us to safeguard this iconic building for many years to come and ensure it retains its position as a flagship regional arts and cultural venue of choice.
Pre-application consultation is an integral part of our work and, during the design development of the Grand Pavilion redevelopment project, we have undertaken a broad schedule of engagement with statutory and non-statutory bodies, specialist advisors, community groups and the public to develop a scheme informed by wide-ranging feedback.
Our most recent engagement was held with the community between the 3rd – 16th July 2023, receiving a large number of responses demonstrating the architectural and social value of the Grand Pavilion. The sessions and surveys captured important feedback and presented positive, constructive and concerned views for our consideration and incorporation.
Since the conclusion of this event we have spent time reviewing and responding to this feedback, amending the scheme in key areas to mitigate concerns and incorporating recommendations that add further value.
We are now conducting a statutory pre-application consultation period as an opportunity to present the amended scheme back to the community, stakeholders and consultees, including access to the full suite of draft planning application information.
Bridgend County Borough Council, in partnership with Awen Cultural Trust, would greatly appreciate your time to provide your feedback on the proposals before they are formally submitted to the Local Planning Authority.
Please follow the guidance on our site notice below to register your responses. If you have any queries or would like any guidance, please get in touch via the details supplied.
THE CONSERVATION, ALTERATION AND EXTENSION OF THE GRADE II GRAND PAVILION, PORTHCAWL
Prior to formal planning submission to the Local Planning Authority and in accordance with the requirements set out in Part 1A of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (Wales) Order 2012 (as amended), the proposal is subject to statutory pre-application consultation.
Notice is given that Bridgend County Borough Council are intending to apply for planning permission and Listed Building Consent for the comprehensive repair, alteration and extension of the Grade II listed Grand Pavilion, Porthcawl.
This notice provides the opportunity to comment directly to the developer on the proposals prior to the submission of a planning application to Bridgend County Borough Council. Any subsequent planning application will be publicised by Bridgend County Borough Council.
Comments provided in response to this notice will not prejudice your ability to make representations to Bridgend County Borough Council on any related planning application. You should note that any comments submitted may be placed on the public file.
The proposed development is at the Grand Pavilion, Esplanade, Porthcawl, CF36 3YW.
You may inspect copies of the proposed application, plans, and supporting documents above.
All drawings, reports and supporting documents are made available for review online below. Porthcawl Library offers computer facilities with internet access to view the proposals. The library is located on Church Place, Porthcawl, CF36 3AG and is open as follows:
The library is closed for lunch between 1 – 2pm.
Anyone who wishes to make representations about this proposed development must do so by October 31st 2023 by completing the web form below.
Alternatively, please email or post your responses to:
The complete draft planning application form to be submitted to Bridgend County Borough Council Planning Department, clarifying specific details of the proposed scheme.
A record drawing set illustrating the existing condition of the Grand Pavilion.
A drawing set to illustrate the scope of conservation and fabric repair to the Grand Pavilion to safeguard historic fabric.
A drawing set illustrating the scope of careful demolition and strip-out, removing non-original fabric and damaged concrete to carefully defined areas.
A drawing set illustrating the extent of alteration and new extension to the Grand Pavilion; a series of flexible and accessible spaces to provide operational sustainability and safeguard the future of the Grand Pavilion as a flagship regional arts and cultural venue of choice.
An Access Statement is a document that explains the ambition of the development in terms of providing equal access for all potential users.
Preliminary Roost Assessments (PRAs) are undertaken on development sites to assess an area for its suitability for bats to roost, forage and commute. This PRA advised a low roost potential at the Grand Pavilion, however recommended a Bat Emergence Survey was undertaken within the bat season.
An acoustic review of the proposed redevelopment plans, providing recommendations for specific room acoustics, acoustic separation and controlling noise break-out.
A Baseline Noise Survey providing a description of the potential noise impacts of the development, a summary of applicable policies and legislation, details of the baseline noise levels at the Grand Pavilion and guidance on acoustic design to eliminate or mitigate noise impact in the redevelopment.
A Design and Access Statement is a report that accompanies and supports a planning application. It illustrates the process that has led to the development proposal and explains the design.
A Travel Plan is a long-term management strategy for integrating proposals for sustainable travel into the planning process. They are based on evidence of anticipated transport impacts of the development and set measures to promote and encourage sustainable travel.
Grand Pavilion Redevelopment FAQs
Subject to the successful completion of RIBA Stage 4, and planning and listed building consent, it is anticipated that the Grand Pavilion will close towards the end of January 2024. This will be followed by a decommissioning period to empty the building before building work commences.
The building work will take around two years to complete. The £18m Levelling Up funding we have been awarded by UK Government is expected to be spent by 31st March 2025 or by 2025-26 on an exceptional basis.
The Grand Pavilion was built in 1931-32 and is a mainly ferrous-concrete structure. Although a cutting-edge construction material at the time, the building now requires comprehensive repairs as a result of over 90 years of weathering and piecemeal maintenance [link to Physical Condition PDFs]. The cost of repairing and preserving the Grand Pavilion in just its existing state is significant. The funding will also be used to enhance the venue for the community now and in future generations, with the addition of a new studio theatre, gallery and artists’ studios and rooftop pavilions. Our commitment to making the venue fully accessible – for the first time in its history – and ensuring it is an energy efficient building will also take a considerable amount of the funding.
For the first time in its 90 year history, you will be able to access the Grand Pavilion though the central main entrance with a new ramp from the pavement and use a new lift to access all floors, including the auditorium balcony and the new rooftop pavilions. More accessible toilets will be added, as well as a fully compliant Changing Places facility.
Yes, the new studio theatre at ground and gallery and artists’ studios at street level will be built on the old tennis courts, which are often used as an overflow parking area. The existing car park will be reconfigured to allow for six accessible and five standard parking spaces, with EV charging points. The area will be soft landscaped to improve its visual aesthetic. There are car parks within easy walking distance of the Grand Pavilion, as well as free parking spaces along the promenade, which are used by our customers. Additional car parking within Porthcawl forms part of Bridgend County Borough Council’s town regeneration plans.
Yes, the Grand Pavilion’s original galleon weather vane, which has been kept in storage since it was damaged during stormy weather, will be restored and returned to the top of the dome.
The auditorium will be largely untouched by the redevelopment, as it has been well preserved. Minimal changes will be made to improve operations and accessibility. The capacity will remain around the 680 mark. The new studio theatre will have a capacity of around 145 seats.
We will be working with the Heritage Development Manager to devise innovative and creative ways of telling the story of the Grand Pavilion, including its links with the renowned American singer and civil rights activist Paul Robeson, which is of huge historical importance. We will also be speaking to people in the local community to capture their memories of the venue, so these too can be retold.
We will be using a range of traditional and digital methods to communicate updates including: face-to-face engagement sessions; printed newsletters; articles in local publications; Grand Pavilion website and social media; on-site hoardings; email newsletters; and behind-the-scenes tours, when it is safe to do so.