Building record MYO423 - JOSEPH ROWNTREE THEATRE

Summary

Theatre and lecture hall. Opened November 1935, with small late-C20 addition. Designed by Barry Parker for the Joseph Rowntree Village Trust. Brown brick with concrete dressings and pantile roofs. Chamfered brick plinth. Main entrance to west has 3-storey recessed centre with triple doorway reached up six concrete steps with wooden canopy over. Above three small windows, then two tall casement windows either side of blank centre, above again three 2-light casement windows. Projecting wings either side have two square uPVC casement windows to left and three similar windows to right. Wings topped with brick parapet topped with concrete coping. Side elevations each have 5 full height buttresses with concrete set-offs, slightly projecting lower floor has concrete coping. Small single-storey flat-roofed late- C20 addition to north. Rear has tall 4-storey fly-tower with broad plain buttresses, flat roof and concrete coped parapets. INTERIOR. Entrance foyer has original composite floor with staircase to left, similar right staircase has been altered to form a small box office. Shallow steps with metal rails lead to auditorium doors between original light fittings. Auditorium has raking stalls and narrow balcony with plain curved front. Both have panelling to dado height incorporating louvred ventilators. Proscenium opening has segmental arch flanked by convex quadrant walls. Balcony front and orchestra pit front are curved on plan. Ceiling spanned by shallow arched ribs that die into the walls and continue as pilaster strips. Original wooden seating survives throughout though re-upholstered at later date. Original stage machinery survives. Originally fitted with ventilation system reputed to be 'one of the most up-to-date systems in the country'. Also fitted with film projection room and modern loudspeaker system for the reproduction of recorded music. A rare example of a surviving theatre from the mid-1930s outside London, and an example of the progressive social policies of the Rowntree family towards their workforce.

Location

Grid reference Centred SE 6073 5357 (41m by 25m)
Map sheet SE65SW
Civil Parish York, City of York, North Yorkshire

Map

Type and Period (6)

Full Description

Theatre and lecture hall. Opened November 1935, with small late-C20 addition. Designed by Barry Parker for the Joseph Rowntree Village Trust. Brown brick with concrete dressings and pantile roofs. Chamfered brick plinth. Main entrance to west has 3-storey recessed centre with triple doorway reached up six concrete steps with wooden canopy over. Above three small windows, then two tall casement windows either side of blank centre, above again three 2-light casement windows. Projecting wings either side have two square uPVC casement windows to left and three similar windows to right. Wings topped with brick parapet topped with concrete coping. Side elevations each have 5 full height buttresses with concrete set-offs, slightly projecting lower floor has concrete coping. Small single-storey flat-roofed late-C20 addition to north. Rear has tall 4-storey fly-tower with broad plain buttresses, flat roof and concrete coped parapets. INTERIOR. Entrance foyer has original composite floor with staircase to left, similar right staircase has been altered to form a small box office. Shallow steps with metal rails lead to auditorium doors between original light fittings. Auditorium has raking stalls and narrow balcony with plain curved front. Both have panelling to dado height incorporating louvred ventilators. Proscenium opening has segmental arch flanked by convex quadrant walls. Balcony front and orchestra pit front are curved on plan. Ceiling spanned by shallow arched ribs that die into the walls and continue as pilaster strips. Original wooden seating survives throughout though re-upholstered at later date. Original stage machinery survives. Originally fitted with ventilation system reputed to be 'one of the most up-to-date systems in the country'. Also fitted with film projection room and modern loudspeaker system for the reproduction of recorded music. A rare example of a surviving theatre from the mid-1930s outside London, and an example of the progressive social policies of the Rowntree family towards their workforce.

Derived from English Heritage LB download dated: 22/08/2005

Theatre now contains WWI and WWII memorial boards formerly located in the Rowntree Factory dining hall. Pers Comm. Ed Freedman CYC Conservation Officer 20/11/19

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Record last edited

Nov 20 2019 11:04AM

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