News: Work starts @ the South Bank Centre

Wednesday 21 April 2004

‘yesterday, the agonising delays finally came to an end when work began on a £90m refurbishment of the Royal Festival Hall, now Grade I listed, and its immediate surroundings at the South Bank Centre. Decisions about the rest of the South Bank site have been put to one side to get things moving.’ Louise Jury, Independent, 21 Apr

‘The Festival Hall is the one shining survivor of the 1951 Festival of Britain. The site, once a symbol of faith in the postwar world, gradually declined into one of the grottiest bits of London, with the building locked in a bewildering maze of dark underpasses, walkways and loading bays.

But the South Bank of the Thames has been transformed by developments including the Globe, Tate Modern, the Saatchi Gallery and the London Eye. Some 10 million people a year now pass the hall using the new Hungerford footbridge or the riverbank walk.’ Maev Kennedy, Guardian, 21 Apr

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