News Walthamstow

Historic theatre’s restoration plans

Soho Theatre set to transform Hoe Street venue into comedy hub Plans have been revealed for the restoration of Walthamstow’s legendary Granada/EMD […]By Waltham Forest Echo

Soho Theatre’s plans for the Granada/EMD Cinema (credit Pilbrow and Partners)
Soho Theatre’s plans for the Granada/EMD Cinema (credit Pilbrow and Partners)

Soho Theatre set to transform Hoe Street venue into comedy hub

Plans have been revealed for the restoration of Walthamstow’s legendary Granada/EMD theatre.

The Grade 2* listed entertainment venue – derelict for 16 years but recently bought for £17million by Waltham Forest Council – is set to be reopened by Soho Theatre as a 1,050-seat comedy hub.

Architectural firm Pilbrow & Partners has been working on the restoration plans, which have been developed in discussion with Historic England. It will see the building’s fabric restored and a stalls parterre introduced between the original stalls and circle levels “to enhance the intimacy of the space without detracting from its heritage”. It will also provide disabled access.


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Founding partner Fred Pilbrow said: “The EMD has been a focus for intense community action to save and restore this important building. I am delighted that our proposals have helped secure support from Waltham Forest [Council] to save this unique and iconic building.

“We are excited about its future at the heart of community and cultural life in Walthamstow.”

The building has an impressive history having previously been not just a theatre and cinema but a music venue that once hosted The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. It is Grade 2* listed by Historic England for its “fine Art Deco and Moorish style interiors”.


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