Wednesday, 22 April 2020

S&C classic collection episode 2

Welcome to episode 2 of the S&C classic collection: today we visit the iconic Chichester Festival Theatre.

Outstanding engineering: taking you on a tour of Skelly & Couch environmental design classics

S&C collection is a new series that takes a retrospective look at a wide selection of high-quality built environments and explores how we apply our distinctive multi-disciplinary approach to solve complex design challenges and push forward innovation. Our journey continues with the Chichester Festival Theatre.

International landmark

The iconic, Grade II*-Listed Chichester Festival Theatre, designed by Powell and Moya and opened in 1962, boasted the first modern ‘thrust’ stage auditorium in the country. Almost sixty years on the Modernist theatre is internationally renowned. The renewal and expansion in 2014 gave clarity to the original design.

Sustainable technologies

The 1,300-seat auditorium was fully refurbished, including the complete replacement by Skelly & Couch of all mechanical and electrical services using sustainable technologies to minimise future running costs and reduce CO2 emissions.

Innovative engineering

A ground source heat pump provides the majority of the heating and cooling and the ventilation system was significantly re-designed to increase comfort. Close co-ordination with the architects allowed the integration of substantially improved thermal elements and new plant within an extremely tight envelope.

Awards encore

The project won a 2015 Civic Trust Commendation and five 2015 RIBA South East Awards. It was shortlisted for a 2016 CIBSE Building Performance Award as Project of the Year – Leisure; and was a finalist in the 2016 International Architecture Awards.

Following this successful collaboration, Skelly & Couch are presently working with the same team on a stunning refurbishment of the Grade I-listed Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

Project data

Chichester Festival Theatre

Chichester, west Sussex

Arts & Theatre

Project value

Completion date
May 2014

Haworth Tompkins

Philip Vile