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Underbelly submits fresh plans for temporary theatre in central London

The Marble Arch island, the site of Underbelly's new proposed temporary theatre. Photo: Wikimedia
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Entertainment and events company Underbelly has resubmitted plans for a temporary theatre in central London, following the withdrawal of initial proposals for one next to the Thames.

The entertainment company previously submitted plans for a 650-seat Spiegeltent in Victoria Embankment Gardens, but these were withdrawn following strong objections from neighbours.

A new planning application has now been put forward, for a similar sized Spiegeltent located on the Marble Arch island next to Hyde Park. The theatre is planned for the grassed area next to the Marble Arch monument.

Known for its work at the Edinburgh Fringe and for its events on the South Bank – Udderbelly Festival and London Wonderground – the company also took charge of a temporary Spiegeltent and Christmas market in Leicester Square last year.

The new temporary theatre would be operational for a 30-week period, beginning in May this year.

The previously mooted plans for Victoria Embankment Gardens sought permission to replicate the theatre in 2018 and 2019, but such suggestions have been left out of the second application.

Plans for a new staging of musical Five Guys Named Moe remain, now to run at the Marble Arch venue, which would be operated by Underbelly.

Previous plans said Five Guys Named Moe would be produced by Underbelly Productions in association with Cameron Mackintosh, but this is not mentioned in the new submission.

A statement from Underbelly confirmed that a new application had been submitted to Westminster City Council, and added: “We are currently going through the planning process and we are consulting with local residents, businesses and other stakeholders.”

A decision is expected in March.

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