We’re ambitious for the borough. If you want to achieve big things you’ve got to deliver big projects. There’s so much public love for the Globe and this is a once in a generation project to bring it back."
Councillor Nigel Cooke | Stockton Council Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Housing
Closed in 1997, the Stockton Globe had fallen into disrepair. To bring investment and economic activity back into the area, the music venue is to be renovated, whilst also preserving this iconic 1913 Art Deco building.
The Globe originally opened in 1913 as Teeside's first purpose-built cinema. The venue was destroyed by fire and rebuilt in the classic art deco style, reopening in 1935.
During the fifties, sixties and seventies it presented some the world's biggest artists including the Beatles and Rolling Stones.
After a period as a bingo hall, the venue closed in 1997.
Energising the Teeside economy
The objective of this project is to sympathetically renovate the Stockton Globe music venue.
The building is to be transformed into a 3,000 capacity live music and comedy venue which is anticipated to bring up to £18 million a year for the town.
As a heritage building, the restoration must be in keeping with its roots by using traditional building methods.
Starting the project on solid ground
Within the venue, the stage is positioned eight metres below ground and as such is liable to flooding. Whilst the building was out of commission, the pumping equipment had been stolen and the whole stage area had become waterlogged. It therefore needed to be made safe, prior to work commencing.
Keeping the project on schedule during the current circumstances has been extremely challenging. The restoration of this iconic building has required specialist heritage skills and the particular materials that are needed have proved difficult to secure.
The Wilmott Dixon team also needed to ensure the safety of both their staff and their supply chain partners, however measures were proactively implemented to ensure that the site stayed open.
A systematic approach to safety
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the project plan is being consistently reviewed, assessing supply chain and materials availability and as such, a pragmatic approach has been used throughout. If a certain set of materials are not available, the Willmott Dixon team were empowered by the Council to adjust the plan.
To ensure that only essential staff remained on site, it was decided that the design and commercial team could work from home.
The site office, which is a large building adjacent to the Globe, was adapted to ensure that current social distancing protocols can be adhered to. Stairs have been made one way with motion-activated sensors that remind operatives to ensure they remain socially distanced. In addition, hand sanitiser stations have been made available throughout the site and site offices.
Communication has been critical throughout and are key to ensuring maintaining safety and ongoing delivery. Each morning, the Willmott Dixon team hold a 'toolbox talks' meeting will all relevant stakeholders. During the meetings the latest guidance and operating procedures are explained and how everyone is expected to work within the guidelines. These talks are held in a large open space to allow for social distancing.
Should a member of the team display any COVID-19 symptoms, the are required to self-isolate.
Due to these detailed and "safety first" working practices, the project has seen more and more supply chain partners returning on a weekly basis, which has helped to allow this project to progress.
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