THE FAIRFIELD Halls’ long-awaited reopening has been delayed again.
The two venue complex, which includes the 1,800-seat Concert Hall and Ashcroft Theatre (cap 755), closed in July 2016 for a £30 million redevelopment.
The refurbishment of the 56-year-old building has been plagued with delays from the start. It has also been suggested that some of the upgrades have been dropped in view of cost overruns.
The main construction work did not begin until September 2017 – 14 months after the venue had closed. The council-run website for Fairfield Halls has not carried any updates since then.
A Croydon Council spokesman tells LIVE UK that the redevelopment was progressing towards a “phased opening” planned for 2019.
“The council’s ambition is to make Fairfield Halls the premiere venue for arts, culture, entertainment and community participation in South London,” he says.
Meanwheile, councillor Oliver Lewis, cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport adds, “We’re very excited to be working with BH Live as our new operator, and venue director Neil Chandler has made excellent progress building partnerships and relationships in readiness for opening.
“We understand its importance and know this venue will play a key role in the music scene, supporting Croydon’s ambitions to become a music city.
The work is now unlikely to be completed before June 2019 at the earliest, almost a year later than the council promised.