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Castle Theatre, Wellingborough
Castle Theatre, Wellingborough - exterior view

Castle Theatre, Wellingborough - view from auditorium
The lower photograph shows The Castle main auditorium operating conventionally as a theatre, with 500 seats, a proscenium and with an orchestra pit.

The Castle main auditorium is designed as a multi-pupose space where particular emphasis was placed on avoiding the usual pitfalls of flexible auditoria both visual and physical. The basis of flexibility is the tilting auditorium floor which can either be arranged as a raked stalls with fixed seating in curved rows or by utilising air film technology. The seats can be removed to a store below leaving the auditorium as a clear level area. The design of the building has been made to provide excellent access for performers and audience alike. This approach has been particularly welcomed by disability groups and is so successful that The Castle is used annually for a disability festival.

This animated picture illustrates how the raked auditorium seating is converted to a flat floor which then becomes a continuation of the main stage and by using the orchestra elevator. The eight pallets which make up the stalls seating are moved using air film technology onto the orchestra pit elevator and then into the basement below.

Redecorated auditorium 2004
Redecorated auditorium 2004

Client: Wellingborough Borough Council
Architect: PDD Architects/Milton Keynes
Project Managers: Howard Associates/Northampton

Main Contractor:
Stage equipment:

Marriott Limited
TeleStage Associates


Timothy Soar