The Big Lottery Fund’s development grant of £45,000 will cover the appointment of a design team to appraise options for the building, agree a preferred solution, develop architect plans to RIBA stage 2, and create a cost plan. It will also fund extensive community consultation, as well as preliminary discussions with planning. This work is expected to be completed by the end of this year.
All members of the design team have been selected as the result of a set of public procurement processes which began in May, and attracted considerable interest from all the relevant disciplines. Andy Davey of Simpson & Brown Architects has been selected to head the design team, and will act as lead consultant to the Eastgate’s project group.
Andy Davey joined the Edinburgh-based practice of Simpson & Brown in 1981, and became a partner in 1998. He has been the architect for a wide variety of projects ranging from the restoration of important public buildings and country houses to the conversion of historic buildings. As a long-term resident of Peebles, he has a particular interest in the Eastgate, and responded enthusiastically to the appointment: “We very much look forward to working with the Eastgate team on this exciting and challenging project”.
Sir David Younger, Chair of the Eastgate’s Board of Directors said:
“We are delighted that the Big Lottery Fund has endorsed the importance of the theatre’s significant contribution both to the people of Peebles and Tweeddale as well as reaching out to communities further afield. The considerable, and increasing, demands on Big Lottery Fund funding make the process of applying very competitive and so this is a significant achievement. There is a clear and growing demand for the services and activities already being delivered by the theatre and we look forward to the development of exciting and imaginative plans to see how we can become a bigger and more flexible resource for the people of Tweeddale and the surrounding area.”
This first phase of work will provide the information, plans and costs required for an application for capital funding to the Big Lottery Fund and other funders before the end of 2017. If these are successful, the aim is to complete the project in 2019.