Royal National Theatre Studio In London Becomes Listed Building


The Royal National Theatre Studio (formerly the Old Vic Annexe) has been Grade II listed, Culture Minister David Lammy announced today.

The decision to list this building, regarded as one of the earliest – and purest - examples of New Brutalism, has been taken following advice from English Heritage, the Government's expert advisors on the built environment.

As the only architect-designed theatre workshop ever built in Britain, it was designed to a unique brief by a leading architectural practise, in 1957-58 to the design of Lyons Israel Ellis.  It brought together scenery workshops, wardrobe stores and offices, previously inconveniently dispersed around London, on a single site adjoining the Old Vic.

Culture Minister David Lammy said:

"The studio is considered an important example in Britain of "New Brutalism", an architectural development of the mid-twentieth century characterised by massive form and scant exterior decoration.

"The studio has historical significance too.  Its association with the Old Vic, the home of the National Theatre until 1976, also adds strong group value and, as the only architect-designed theatre workshop in Britain, there is a good case for giving it the extra protection that listing affords."

Notes to Editors

1.  Edward Lyons and Lawrence Israel established their practice in 1932, joined by Tom Ellis in 1947. This was one of the most influential post-war practices specialising in education, public housing and healthcare.

2.  The main purpose of listing a building is to ensure that care will be taken over decisions affecting its future, that any alterations respect the particular character and interest of the building, and that the case for its preservation is taken fully into account in considering the merits of any redevelopment proposals.

3.  English Heritage, statutory adviser on the historic environment, protects and provides advice on this country's unique legacy of historic buildings, landscapes and archaeological sites. It also manages over 400 sites and welcomes more than 11 million visitors to these each year.


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