One of London's most iconic venues, the Bloomsbury Theatre, has been forced to close early for large-scale construction work after asbestos was found in the building. |
The theatre was supposed to close in January 2016 for six months next year, prior to minor building works disturbing asbestos in the building. This led to management deciding to close the venue early so it can still reopen by next summer - another story that has highlighted the continued importance of asbestos air testing.
Staff members are now collaborating with production companies to find venues for shows that were due to take place at the venue before January. These include Gangsta Granny (an adaptation of David Walliams' children's book) and a fundraising event for the Arts Emergency charity.
University College London, the theatre's owners, said that the decision was essential for safety purposes. The institution said the works would now "take longer than anticipated", adding that "we apologise for the inconvenience caused". However, the recently opened Studio part of the building is to remain open while the main auditorium is out of use.
The theatre, on Gordon Street in the Borough of Camden is famed for hosting high-profile drama, music, comedy and dance productions. It first opened in 1968, when it was called the Collegiate Theatre and was renamed the Bloomsbury Theatre in 1982. It was known as The UCL Bloomsbury for seven years in the 2000s. Ricky Gervais is among its most famous alumnus.
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