Swansea Council has appointed R&M Williams Ltd to transform the grade two listed building, the Palace Theatre. The building survived the second world war which saw many other buildings in Swansea destroyed during the blitz.
In its heyday many famous people made an appearance there such as Charlie Chaplin, Lilly Langtry, Dan Leno & Marie Lloyd (in its earlier days) followed by Morecombe & Wise and Sir Anthony Hopkins in its latter use as a theatre before being changed to a gay nightclub in the 1970s. Since the closure of the nightclub, the iconic building fell into a dilapidated state of repair with trees growing from the rooftop.
Swansea City Council acquired the building in early 2020 and in a short time after in April, a design team was tasked with developing proposals.
The building will be refurbished and transformed into a home for tech, start-ups and creative businesses.
Council leader Rob Stewart said: “I welcome R&M Williams Ltd to this excellent project that will bring new life to one of Swansea’s most iconic buildings.”
Robert Francis-Davies, the council’s cabinet member for investment, regeneration and tourism, said: “I’m delighted that a high-quality Welsh construction firm will be part of this prestigious project.”
Darryn Parry, managing director of R&M Williams Ltd, said: “R&M are delighted to be appointed as principal contractor to undertake the restoration of the iconic Palace Theatre building.”
Lee Waters, the Welsh Government’s Deputy Minister for Climate Change, said: “Through our Transforming Towns programme, we are providing £136m to further support the economic and social recovery of our town and city centres across Wales and our Town Centre First policy, embedded in Wales’ national development plan Future Wales, means that town and city centre sites should be the first consideration for all decisions on the location of workplaces and services.”
The building and its facilities is expected to be open to the public in 2023.
We’ve appointed top Welsh contractor @RandM_Williams to transform our historic Palace Theatre building. They have a strong record of working with heritage buildings, including the grade two listed @PenarthPavilion t.co/FbURBl3HVu pic.twitter.com/BLh1pT7eOi
— Swansea Council (@SwanseaCouncil) October 6, 2021