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Chester's Storyhouse Theatre

Storyhouse is Chester’s brand new cultural centre: theatre, cinema, library, studio theatre, restaurant and bar housed within a rejuvenated 1930s Grade II Listed Art Deco Odeon cinema building. It has become the largest public recreational building in the city.

We were approached by Keir following recommendation from Cheshire West Councils conservation architects team to replace all of their original brass handrails with new tubular handrails.

We visited site and discovered that the majority of the original handrails and their cast iron fixing brackets remained within the building; some remaining in-situ on the staircase and the majority in a pile in the theatres’ basement… We recommended that these be restored rather than replaced with new sections remade where parts were missing or severely damaged.

We surveyed the staircase along with the original brass handrails before returning them to our workshop for restoration/replication.

In addition, we were also asked to provide two new dwarf balustrades to deter the public from climbing onto two podiums. These were manufactured to a recognised “Art Deco” design.

Our client provided us with a sketch which we developed into a working design, originally detailed in brass, but cost savings were required and steel was agreed upon. Drawings were submitted for approval prior to the manufacture of the balustrade.

We returned the restored handrails to the theatre and installed them to the staircase prior to blending the brass joints and giving them a final polish.

The new balustrades were installed onto the podiums.

Chester Storyhouse Theatre, finished and

Chester Storyhouse Theatre, finished and "Open For Good Times"

Handrail sections were found in a damp basement, covered in thick paint layers, scratches and unwanted kinks.

Handrail sections were found in a damp basement, covered in thick paint layers, scratches and unwanted kinks.

We returned the restored handrails to the theatre and installed them to the staircase before giving them a final polish. The new balustrades were installed onto the podiums.

We returned the restored handrails to the theatre and installed them to the staircase before giving them a final polish. The new balustrades were installed onto the podiums.

The finished staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

The finished staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

The finished main staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

The finished main staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

The finished main staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

The finished main staircase at Chester's Storyhouse Theatre.

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