The five-year project has doubled the hall’s audience capacity by opening up its upper and lower side balconies for public use. Improvements have also been made to the building’s foyer and youth arts centre facilities.
Hoxton Hall, built in 1863, has been used for a range of purposes since closing as a music hall in 1871 – from a Quaker meeting room and air raid shelter to a cabaret theatre and community centre.
Many of its original features remain, including the ornate balcony columns. The removal of modern brick walls has also revealed original cast iron windows on the music hall façade.
This restoration follows an upgrade to the hall’s café, art and music studios in 2012.
‘Hoxton Hall is a very rare surviving music hall, a building of immense character and an amazing performance venue,’ says Edmund Wilson, partner at Foster Wilson Architects. ‘The knocks, scrapes and scuffs of years of use have been left for people to see so they can enjoy a building that wears its history with pride.’
Karena Johnson, artistic director and CEO at Hoxton Hall, adds: ‘The beautifully detailed restoration work undertaken by Foster Wilson Architects of this living music hall will enable us make this unique auditorium accessible to a new generation of audiences from Hackney and beyond.’