Editor | Cassandra Lau
Following a £27 m restoration of its Theatre and East Court supported by National Lottery and Haringey Council, our beloved Alexandra Palace will be hosting its first ever Christmas carnival to run 1st to 16th December!
The Theatre and East Court were closed off from the public for 80 years, and last weekend, the Alexandra Park and Palace Charitable Trust (APPCT) gave us a glimpse of its finishing touches.
Louise Stewart, Chief Executive of APPCT says, “This December, people from London and beyond will be able to explore this incredible space that has been hidden from the public. The Christmas Carnival is a great opportunity to celebrate the hard work that has gone into completing this immense project, but also give people a chance to experience the work of the Charity and our Creative Learning Programme. We would like to thank the HLF, Haringey Council and the countless individuals, trusts and businesses who have supported this project and helped make the reopening a reality.”
The three-year East Wing Restoration Project, thanks to Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, was supported by the National Lottery grant with £18.8 m, making it one of their biggest ever heritage projects!
Head of Heritage Lottery Fund, Stuart Hobley, says, “Alexandra Palace is one of North London’s best-loved landmarks and has played an era-defining role in popular culture, from the birth of television to the Pink Floyd-headlined 14 Hour Technicolour Dream. The beautifully-restored Theatre and East Court will build on this unique legacy, and is only possible thanks to money raised by National Lottery players”.
There will also be a new cafe and Creative Learning Zone within the East Court in Spring 2019 to ensure open access to the public throughout the day and all-year-round.
Alexandra Palace’s first theatrical co-production with Headlong and Bristol Old Vic, Richard III will also be opening in March 2019. The current programme includes performances from legendary club Ronnie Scott’s, Dylan Moran, Gareth Malone and the BBC’s long-running “Friday Night is Music Night”. Further events will be announced soon.
About Ally Pally
Originally opened in 1875, Alexandra Palace Theatre was home to pantomimes, operas, dramas, ballets and music concerts. It is surrounded by 196 acres of Grade II listed parkland and offers unprecedented views of the city. Considered a marvel of Victorian engineering, it has some of the most advanced stage machinery and mechanics of the age, allowing performers to disappear, reappear and sore through the air.
It was then used as a chapel during World War One, a cinema and Gracie Fields’s theatrical testing ground prior to being closed off to the public and used as a BBC prop store and workshop.