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01/12/2023

£132m Transformation Of Bristol Beacon Complete

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Willmott Dixon has completed the once-in-a-generation £132 million transformation of Bristol Beacon, one of the most iconic cultural landmarks in the South West of England.

It has taken five years and involved more than a million hours of time to create a flagship venue that will attract thousands of people each year to see some of the world's best entertainment acts. Described by Arts Council England as "one of the great cultural icons of modern-day Britain", the largest concert venue in the region also represents the second largest investment in the arts in England by the Arts Council in the last 10 years.

Thanks to the structural refurbishment led by Willmott Dixon, Bristol Beacon now boasts four new world-class performance spaces, allowing it to deliver over 800 events a year and generate an estimated £13 million annually to the economy. Its music education centre in the transformed and previously inaccessible cellars, called Bristol Water Sound Studios, will enable 30,000 children a year to use new state-of-the-art practice and rehearsal spaces.

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As well as having some of the best acoustics of any concert hall in Europe, it will also have some of the highest levels of physical accessibility throughout making it truly accessible to everyone, both artists and audiences.

Sustainability has also been built in - the environmentally conscious design of the transformed venue will contribute to its net zero goal by 2030 and adapt Bristol Beacon for a lifetime of sustainable use.

Richard David, director who led Willmott Dixon's team at the Bristol Beacon, said: "I can't emphasise enough just how proud Willmott Dixon is to be a part of Bristol Beacon’s renewal. Its complexities and challenges have been like nothing the team has ever undertaken, yet everyone has risen to the challenge and both our team and our supply chain partners deserve recognition for their commitment and dedication.

"The project has required intricate planning at every stage, and we have ensured that since the start we have truly respected the heritage of the building, its conservation, restoration and renovation, as well as understanding the building structure and fabric. An extraordinary amount of work and skill has been required to resolve the issues we faced; archaeological, historical, logistical and technical.

"The building that has been delivered is incredible. Bristol Beacon is so much more than a construction project and will have a fantastic impact on the city for generations to come."

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