ArtsEd Plans for Major Expansion Approved

Design includes new studio theatre and rooftop dance studios

Artist's impression of new building from Bath Road


Arts Ed Planning Application

Trevor Nunn To Direct Shakespeare Play At ArtsEd

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Plans by the Arts Educational School on Bath Road for a major upgrade and expansion have been approved by Hounslow Council's Planning Committee Thursday (14 June).

The project, which will provide an extra 3,000 square feet for the school, had been recommended for approval.

The school is planning a three-phase development which would see new classrooms and performing arts studios built on the unused courtyard space at the rear of the current site, a new elliptical studio theatre at the eastern end and new dance and acting rooftop studios on the Bath Road building, Cone Ripman House.

Earlier this year, ArtsEd put forward a planning proposal to Hounslow from architects De Matos Ryan, showing how to make use of the tight urban site, optimizing the existing buildings and unlocking the potential of currently empty courtyard space - whilst maintaining a positive contribution to the wider conservation area and community as well as the school’s immediate neighbours.

The project which has now been given the go-ahead will cover all aspects of ArtsEd’s provision and will see significant improvements in the facilities of the Day School and Sixth Form as well as the Schools of Acting and Musical Theatre.

ArtsEd was originally built as Chiswick Polytechnic in the 1950s and adapted for the schools’ use on arrival over thirty years ago. Today, Cone Ripman House is set to be redeveloped to create facilities that reflect ArtsEd’s reputation for world-class conservatoire training.

Principal Chris Hocking says:
“We are delighted to be able to move forwards with our refurbishment plans and provide our students with facilities that match the exceptional quality of our teaching - ensuring that future generations continue to leave ArtsEd as outstandingly confident and creative young performers.”

Once the refurbishment is complete, ArtsEd students will all be hosted in one location, ensuring that they all enjoy the best possible performing arts environment. ArtsEd will also be able to share these new facilities with the wider community through its continuing programme of evening and weekend courses.

The first two phases would include a new build substation to be located on Bath Road; new purpose-built classrooms and performing arts studios in the rear zone of the site; creation of
a new build studio theatre to world class standards. A New entrance canopy to the building and amended internal layout of foyer is also planned.

Phase 3 works would involve the removal of the existing pitched roof to the main building and the addition of a new floor with additional dance and acting studios.

The Bedford Park Society broadly welcome the proposal as making a positive contribution to the
Conservation Area both architecturally and socially. However it did express some concerns about certain aspects of design such as the Entrance canopy.

ArtsEd believe it could create an arts building which will be widely acclaimed and offer an enhancement to Bedford Park. The architects for the project are De Matos Ryan.

ArtsEd London, which is supported by famous names from the world of theatre and music including Sir Trevor Nunn and Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, and whose alumni includes Julie Andrews and Nigel Havers, opened a modern theatre on the premises a few years ago and the circular 'drum' design may be an integral focus for the refurbishment which will also include an upgrade for the central lobby, and a cafeteria.

ArtsEd originated from two schools, one founded in 1919 by Grace Cone and one in 1922 by Olive Ripman. The school has been on its current site since 1985.

June 16, 2018

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