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Redgrave Theatre


Set in the beautiful gardens of Grade II listed Brightwells House, the Redgrave was built in the 1970s for the Farnham Repertory Theatre Company when the Castle Theatre (q.v.) was vacated. The house itself provided a restaurant (the Castle Restaurant) and club room, with other offices and dressing rooms above. A single roof was formed from standard Trocoll double-tee bridge beams carried on simple linear walls. Inside, the end stage has a forestage or orchestra pit to accommodate 10 musicians. There is no flytower but the stage was equipped with a permanent revolve. The auditorium is a concrete structure with no decoration, fan shaped in a single rake. The foyer was extended in 1986 but facilities were limited. In all the building serves as an interesting example of combining an existing listed building with new build to provide a cost effective solution. The theatre has had a troubled history and has suffered from neglect since its closure in 1997 and is in a poor state of repair. Various schemes have been developed to re-open the building, but so far none of them has managed to provide a stable future for the theatre, mainly because of ownership issues. The building is currently under threat of demolition as part of a larger redevelopment scheme.

Built / Converted
Dates of use
  • 1974 - 1997: Theatre
Current state
Current use
Brightwells, Farnham, Surrey, GU9 7SB, England
Further details
Other names
  • 1790 Design/Construction: Brightwell House
    Thomas Turner
    - Architect
  • 1920 Owner/Management:
    Waverley Borough Council
    - Owner
  • 1974 Alteration: theatre added
    Frank Rutter
    - Architect
    Theatre Projects Consultants
    - Theatre
    Telestage Associates
    - Stage revolve
  • 1974 Owner/Management:
    Farnham Repertory Co Ltd
    - Lessee
  • 1974 - 1997 Use: Theatre
  • 1986 Alteration: creation of entrance foyer
    Frank Rutter
    - Architect
  • Capacity
  • Capacity
  • Listing
    Not listed
    Brightwells House is Grade II
Stage type
End stage with thrust orchestra pit
Building dimensions: -
Stage dimensions: Depth: 12.2m Width: 20.74m
Proscenium width: -
Height to grid: Special track grid 6.1m
Inside proscenium: -
Orchestra pit: Flexible (with thrust) for 10