Newcastle architects to lead £1.3m Tyneside Cinema development

Tyneside Cinema is to get a new bar, digital video art gallery and cinema in an ambitious development

The Tyneside cinema is expanding
The Tyneside cinema in Newcastle

Newcastle's xsite architecture has been appointed to deliver an ambitious £1.3m development at the city’s Tyneside Cinema.

The work, which will start later this year, will entail the creation of an intimate 40-seater digital video art gallery and cinema, as well as a vibrant new bar café within attached premises that front on to Pilgrim Street.

Initially xsite was appointed to undertake a feasibility study and submit the scheme for planning. After a re-tendering process, it was awarded a second appointment to deliver the redevelopment work.

The new bar, designed to be an integral part of the art deco-styled Tyneside Cinema, will be created first, incorporating an area for customers to enjoy a drink in cabaret-style seating while watching films.

The bar currently on the third floor will no longer be needed, leaving room for a multi-function space that will be used to host film and video installation pieces during the day, while offering a fourth screen at night.

Funding of £1.2m for the project is coming from trusts and foundations, with the cinema launching an appeal last year to raise the remaining £100,000.

xsite partner Tim Bailey said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have such a key role in this latest phase of the Tyneside Cinema’s expansion and evolution.

“The building has been in existence since 1937 and is a fine example of the art deco period. We will be taking the venue to another level without losing sight of its heritage, yet at the same time, building on the cinema’s reputation as a contemporary destination for discerning visitors.

“To create two spaces, each with two significantly different uses, is definitely a challenge which I believe requires a complete understanding of the user experience in all its guises, coupled with some clever thinking on our part to make full use of the space.”

Mark Dobson, chief executive of Tyneside Cinema, said: “We are thrilled to be working with xsite architecture again on this project. The creation of the Cinema’s Intermezzo Café back in 2000 was xsite’s first job and it has gone on to be a tremendous success. They beat off very strong competition for this job and it was the practice’s passion for arts and culture, alongside their exemplary track record in creating stylish food and drink spaces, which really pushed them to the fore.”

To donate to the Tyneside Appeal, visit www.justgiving.com/Tyneside-Cinema-Appeal .

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