Kenwright Ltd: Luxury flats plan for Peterborough’s Broadway Theatre ‘tragic’

Broadway Theatre in Peterborough Broadway Theatre in Peterborough
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Bill Kenwright’s theatre company has hit out against a “tragic” plan to convert Peterborough’s Broadway Theatre into luxury flats.

The venue has been mostly dark since its closure in 2011 but has staged two seasons of work by Bill Kenwright Limited – one in 2013 and another over the 2015 festive period, finishing in January 2016.

But owner Rinaldo Fasulo has now commissioned DT Architects to design the theatre’s conversion into a block of 56 apartments – dubbed Broadway Roof Gardens.

The designs have not yet been submitted as a planning application, but the theatre is currently on the market for a new buyer who could take on the building with planning consent or apply for a new plan.

Bill Kenwright Limited executive director Steve Potts said it would be “tragic” for Peterborough to lose the theatre, and claimed BKL would “certainly return if there was the right opportunity”.

He said: “The Broadway has huge potential as proven time and again by BKL’s productions and indeed its seasons there. But without the Broadway either being owned by the city of Peterborough or run in partnership with a theatre operator, there is only so much one producer can do.”

Potts said in 2015 that BKL had no plans to buy the theatre, but that he would “love to see it open full time”.

In his statement about the conversion attempt, Potts said he’d be “surprised and disappointed” if the change of use was given planning permission.

The Broadway Theatre closed in 2011 after then manager Paul Coxwell led the venue into financial difficulty, leaving producers and suppliers owed “several hundred thousand pounds”.

In August 2014, Coxwell was convicted of fraud and breaching court orders, and sentenced to more than three years in jail.

Fasulo could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.