Wednesday, October 4, 2023

News: Heritage buildings lined up for live music venue in Rotherham town centre


A number of historic buildings in Rotherham town centre are being assessed for their suitability as a new live music venue.

Rothbiz reported that despite £4.5m being set aside for a scheme to repurpose the former Guest & Chrimes foundry as an National / International music venue, the council was unable to reach an agreement with the landowner, Rotherham United Football Club.

The project team had carried out work for a year to develop a business case which was submitted to the Government last August. The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has given the green light for the money for the Guest & Chrimes project to be moved to another site as potential operators are still interested in the town.

The first alternative option to be looked at was the former cinema known as the Essoldo building.

Bought for £1.9m in 2006, the building on Ship Hill / High Street was built in 1913 as the Empire Theatre. It has since operated as a cinema, snooker hall and nightclub and its facade, windows and other external features were refurbished as part of the council-led Townscape Heritage Initiative.

A public private partnership between the council and building owner has been looked at to progress the project, however, surveys and assessments have been carried out and costs have come in over budget.

On the Essoldo Building, council minutes show that: "The operator is still interested but not sure if it is the right building and is considering if this is the appropriate location."

The next heritage site to be looked at is the Cutlers Arms and Alma Tavern, which are now owned by Rotherham Council.

The Westgate / Sheffield Road area is key for the authority's aim of building more residential properties in the town centre as it acquired all land and properties in the location owned by Satnam Urban Regeneration Ltd. This includes the 200 space Westgate Car Park and the two pubs including the derelict Alma Tavern, which has been under the threat of demolition.

Simon Moss, Assistant Director for Planning, Regeneration and Transport at Rotherham Council, said: "The Cutlers is a listed building, with the Alma frontage having the same theme. There is still an option to work with both and pull together a similar scheme. This could be a pragmatic solution, bring the music inside and sound proof the venue, it is a scheme that is possible."

More empty properties in town are being looked at by the council and its partners.

One building not yet mentioned as a live music venue is the former bingo hall on Corporation Street (another former cinema) which is also under council ownership. Rothbiz revealed that, when the authority applied to knock down the former Wilkos next door, the site had been earmarked as the potential location for a new theatre.

Images: Google Maps


Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 11:21 AM  

They'd ruin the cutler's,just touching it,it's charm is being untouched,the worn floors bring memories of my long gone grandfather walking on very same floor decades ago.RMBC LEAVE THIS PLACE ALONE!

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 1:21 PM  

I bet you the people running it dont think that.
I bet they are all for it being turned into a live music venue.
Rotherham needs a proper live music venue and if it wasn't for the council who you seem to blame for all the ills we will be we have one.
But then you can blame the council again can't you.

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 1:37 PM  

The Cutlers is already a live music venue & seems to get on quite nicely. Don't try to mend something thats not broken .

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 1:59 PM  

Hey! Council! Leave that pub alone!

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 3:37 PM  

Leave the cutlers alone and have the music venue in the old scala odeon bingo place

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 4:26 PM  

Best way to ensure that the Cutlers remains untouched is to get it named as a regeneration project in the Tory Manifesto.

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 4:33 PM  

Tory ministers are to the truth what David Beckham is to marriage vows.

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 5:48 PM  

Leave the cutler's alone.

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 5:51 PM  

Agree convert the scala building,or even better ,get dialogue going with football club and get the original plan on track at Guest and chrimes,cos that's a absolute eyesore!

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 6:06 PM  

Totally agree, a larger music venue could reinvigorate the entire nighttime economy of Rotherham.

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 7:04 PM  

The Cutler's is currently a great live music venue, but with most of the music events taking place outside (in a tent), this won't be sustainable with all the residential buildings going up nearby

Anonymous,  October 4, 2023 at 8:18 PM  

If a music venue happens it would be great for the town, for the love of God though don't let the Cutlers people be part of it.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 8:16 AM  

Guest & Chrimes site a missed opportunity if it is dead in the water. Perfect location.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 9:30 AM  

It is a missed opportunity.

However the old bingo hall at the bottom or corporation would be an even bigger missed opportunity. It's the perfect building for such a venue and it's so close to the Bus and Railway stations. Anybody with half a brain could see the potential. But, as this is Rotherham, it'll probably just end up on fire.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 1:15 PM  

Trouble is ,scala site is planned to be site of new theatre.As said above Guest and chrimes site would be best and rid town of an eyesore.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 2:45 PM  

Again, anyone with half a brain would combine the music venue and theatre into one venue.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 2:47 PM  

If they made one venue out of the Cutlers and Alma surely it would be a full renovation as the place is close to falling down and a wreck inside.....Don't think the Alma is much better either.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 3:04 PM  

The problem for the Cutlers as someone else says is the Tarpaulin stage set up, the new properties being built round it won't want the noise pollution, in truth its not exactly a good look and looks shabby and cheap.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 6:13 PM  

With the council buying the Alma/Cutlers/Car park site surely they have plans to do something with them, maybe this as already been decided and we will lose another pub in the near future.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 7:56 PM  

The best thing for The Cutlers' Arms is for it to be knocked down. Flatten it. And then burn it and throw the ashes into the River Don flowing behind it. That place is so rowdy when live concerts are played there. I believe in peace and tranquility in the Rotherham town centre, not noise pollution.

And speaking of pollution, all the live music venues and nightclubs in the town attract filthy polluters who leave broken beer bottles, takeout food containers, vomit, urine, rats, flies all over the place.

The best thing for those downtown clubs, bars, and fast food outlets is for them to be knocked down. Flatten them. And then burn them and throw their ashes into the River Don flowing nearby.

Anonymous,  October 5, 2023 at 10:47 PM  

What a well thought out and coherent rant from someone professing to value peace and tranquility.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 1:32 AM  

Rumour is they have been given notice to vacate so may not be that long till you get your wish.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 9:12 AM  

I didn't realise that RMBC had bought the Essoldo building. The Scala building really worries me. A purpose built art deco cinema and theatre dating back to the golden days of the silver screen, which I suspect will be demolished for some sort of replacement for the long lost Arts Centre.

If I was RMBC, I'd use that money to regenerate the Alma (the outside of the building is unique to Rotherham and should be preserved in my mind) by retaining the fascia and doing something clever with the remainder of the building and look at upgrading the Scala to a multi-purpose venue to promote live music, entertainment etc. Something akin to the Winding Wheel in Chesterfield which seems to be fairly well run by the local council.

As for the ship hill site, what's wrong with that being used as a night club? I know the days of the Zone and New York, New York are long gone, but I would have thought that there's still a need for venues like that in towns like Rotherham.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 9:15 AM  

For those interested, here's a little potted history to the Winding Wheel.

Not that dissimilar to the Scala Building, except unlike RMBC, Chesterfield BC actually seemed to have a half decent plan and made good on it!

"The Winding Wheel was originally built as the Picture House cinema in 1923 and later became the Odeon in 1938.

In the 1960s the Odeon was acquired by Rank Organisation, the Ballroom was painted red and became a nightclub. The building closed as a cinema in 1981. Apart from the nightclub in the Ballroom and café area, the building lay unused for 5 years, but in 1987, Chesterfield Borough Council purchased and completely refurbished the building, taking away the fixed seating and constructing a dance floor above the stalls whilst keeping the internal décor intact.

The building reopened in 1987 as the Winding Wheel Exhibition, Entertainment and Conference Centre. In 2000 the Winding Wheel was made a Grade II Listed Building."

Tom,  October 6, 2023 at 9:26 AM  

Essoldo is in private ownership. RMBC looked at doing a public private partnership between the council and building owner to move forward with the project.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 11:34 AM  

Nightclubs aren't really as much of a thing these days, even in Sheffield and Leeds it's all about bars rather than clubs.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 12:33 PM  

Thought this potential new music venue is supposed to be some sort of 'international'thing, something of that description would need a building larger that the cutler's?Get the original plan of Guest and chrimes on track,if Tony Stewart doesn't want to play ball ,then if he doesn't get a plan for site passed,go for compulsory purchase,the site is a eyesore,get it sorted.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 4:18 PM  

I believe that Tony Stewart does want to play ball but then apparently so does his football team.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 5:18 PM  

Spoken like a true non football fan

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 5:36 PM  

You wouldn't think so if you went every week.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 6:37 PM  

I'd suggest people forget the Cutlers as a large music venue it's not really a very good small music venue, the work needed would be wasted with the property's springing up round it, in truth it's days are probably numbered.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 8:43 PM  

The Cutlers in the grand scheme of things is an OK small music venue it's just a pity the Adams family run it.

Anonymous,  October 6, 2023 at 11:43 PM  

I do go every week

Anonymous,  October 7, 2023 at 6:38 AM  

Everyone seems to have overlooked the County. It's karaoke sessions are legendary and there is ample room on the pavement outside for patrons who wish to have a smoke and swear at passers-by.

Anonymous,  October 7, 2023 at 12:41 PM  

The County should be burnt to the ground and it's ashes tipped into the River Don, which flows conveniently nearby

Anonymous,  October 7, 2023 at 2:36 PM  

When the world burns an all life is lost I think you'll find the County and some of its regulars will survive.

Anonymous,  October 7, 2023 at 5:11 PM  

Only the ones that have already been embalmed and propped up against the bar in the snug

Anonymous,  October 7, 2023 at 8:41 PM  

Think a lot of people are being harsh on the Cutlers in truth.... it's only the beer and lager that let's it down, maybe get Acorn or Bradfield in.....get some proper beer on.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 6:57 AM  

Was it the Cutlers that went to the national press complaining about council officials? Maybe that wasn't the best move...but running a business isn't for everyone I suppose.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 8:12 AM  

And the lady who stands outside with a pint of cider and shouts at the bus station.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 10:15 AM  

Oh for the days of Watney's Red Barrel - straight from the River Don which runs nearby.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 12:53 PM  

All I've ever read is moaning an complaints from them stopped following on social media as all they ever did was beg you to go "use it or lose it" just the other week one was on a program about the success of Wetherspoons slagging em off...embarrassing.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 7:22 PM  

To be fair, the bus station started it.

Anonymous,  October 8, 2023 at 10:27 PM  

Take the old Odeon and use The Picturedome in Holmfirth as a business model.That place does rather well and generates a lot of money for the town

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 12:54 PM  

Very good shout

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 1:35 PM  

That the same Weatherspoons who sold off two town centre pubs and cancelled plans to develop the other?

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 3:48 PM  

Wetherspoons always sell the bottom performing pubs I'm afraid, that's how business works but I'm sure you know that, or maybe you're not a business man/woman and don't.

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 4:17 PM  

Whatever the rights and wrongs about the current owners, the Cutlers must be preserved as is. It has been described as one of the most authentically surviving Edwardian public houses in Yorkshire. We have too few fine buildings to squander on the whims of developers

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 5:59 PM  

Are the current owners not RMBC?

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 7:08 PM  

Would the issue here be that the people who run the pub don't actually own the building ,so won't have a say in the final outcome?

Anonymous,  October 9, 2023 at 11:17 PM  

If the owners are Rotherham Council then I am sure that they can be relied to preserve this important part of our heritage. Just like they did with Doncaster Gate Hospital.

Anonymous,  October 10, 2023 at 8:03 AM  

It's called progress.

Anonymous,  October 10, 2023 at 5:34 PM  

No, it's called vandalism

Anonymous,  October 11, 2023 at 4:01 PM  

I can sense a fire in its future.

Anonymous,  October 14, 2023 at 8:31 AM  

Let me guess "it's not fair blah blah blah competition it's not fair Rotherham should be Chantry only blah blah blah"

Anonymous,  October 14, 2023 at 9:46 AM  

The only downfall of this is its not really a fine building.

Anonymous,  October 14, 2023 at 5:56 PM  

Heard the brewery threatened to pull sponsorship of Camra if a certain pub carried on winning Pub of the year, says all you need to know about the Brewery.

Anonymous,  October 22, 2023 at 10:40 AM  

The Cutlers was better when the other couple run it, apparently he couldn't trust her with the customers so that got put to bed as it were.

Supported by:
More news...

  © Blogger template Newspaper III by 2008

Back to TOP