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Malthouse Theatre at The King’s School Canterbury Wins Prestigious Title in RIBA South East Awards
UK – The Malthouse Theatre in the heart of the City of Canterbury, an impressive and magnificent converted Victorian building belonging to the oldest school in Europe: The King’s School, has been named ‘South East Building of the Year 2021’ by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
As well as this coveted title, the state-of-the-art venue which includes a 334-seat auditorium also won the South East Conservation Award and the adjacent King's School, Canterbury International College was awarded a regional RIBA South East Award.
The RIBA awards recognise London-based Tim Ronalds Architects’ £28million sensitive conversion of the semi-derelict brewery malting building, into extensive drama and dance facility for students of The King’s School, a modern theatre used by professional touring companies and local community groups and a unique wedding venue.
The strategy was to preserve the inherent dramatic character and atmosphere and make the Malthouse a place for creativity. Theatricality is now at the heart of this building, but this does not come at the expense of the building’s identity. The Malthouse officially opened in November 2019.
The judges unanimously agreed that the industrial Malthouse is an exemplar of how to repurpose an existing building for a range of uses and users, in an imaginative, honest and sensitive way and described the conversion as combining ‘a freshness of approach while sensitively retaining the character of the existing building’.
Mark Taylor, bursar at The King’s School, Canterbury said: “I am so delighted with the result from the RIBA it represents having a very clear vision and years of careful planning. We are so lucky to have benefited from such incredible design and co-ordination skill from two outstanding firms of Architects (Walters and Cohen and Tim Ronald Associates) as well as such great work and support from the wider professional team. Not only is this such a critically important School facility but I am so pleased that it benefits Canterbury and the wider community as well.”
Lucy Thomas, architect at Tim Ronalds Architects Limited said: “Creating this theatre and drama department for The King’s School, Canterbury was a hugely rewarding experience. We feel privileged to have been part of the team that brought thus historic building back into use and are delighted that our enthusiasm for the project was shared by the RIBA South East jury.”
As Regional Award winners, The Malthouse and International College, designed by Walters & Cohen Architects, will now also be considered for a highly coveted RIBA National Award in recognition of their architectural excellence.
12th August 2021
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