Designers approached for South Bank project

Design consultancies are to be approached to work on the planned £22.2m refurbishment of the Royal Festival Hall and development of the South Bank Centre.

The Heritage Lottery Fund has earmarked a £12.5m grant for the London landmark, which attracts around three million visitors annually. A £450 000 development grant has been issued already, though the additional £12m will only be awarded when certain criteria is fulfilled. Nearly £10m of further funding is being sought.

A South Bank Centre spokeswoman says: “No design groups have been approached at this stage. No doubt they will be appointed in the future, but not until much further down the line.

“It will not be until we receive the £12m in a year’s time, which is providing we undertake the conditions set out by the Heritage Lottery Fund,” she adds.

The plans include the refurbishment and restoration of public foyers, the riverfront café and two roof terraces. The signs are also scheduled to be updated.

South Bank Board chairman Elliott Bernerd describes the grant as “a crucially important element” in the whole regeneration of the South Bank.

“This is essential renovation work to an important Grade I listed building. The introduction of a new glass lift will provide access to all levels of the auditorium and public spaces of the Royal Festival Hall for both audiences and visitors,” he says.

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