Bristol Plays Music is the first music education hub based at a major concert venue and this enables us to present truly world-class artists in masterclasses and concerts, but Bristol Beacon (formerly know as Colston Hall) was 150 years old in 2017 and is beginning to look its age. There has been no major refurbishment for the last sixty years. Indeed, it is the only major concert hall in the UK not to have been redeveloped in recent times. Doing nothing is therefore not an option.
So we are doing something about it. We need your help to achieve our ambitious plans – turning our iconic building into something that we can all be proud of – as a city, region and nation.
The transformation will form Phase Two of Bristol’s biggest ever redevelopment programme in the arts sector. The first stage involved the construction of the £20 million foyer space, which opened in 2009. Phase Two is planned to start in 2018 and be completed by 2020.
In September 2014 we launched our appeal, which set a target to raise £48.8 million to transform Bristol Beacon into an international standard concert facility and a National Centre for Inclusion, Entertainment, Education and Enterprise across the arts – including music, comedy, theatre, dance and the visual arts.
So far, over £40 million has been raised, thanks to financial commitments that include £10 million from Bristol City Council, £5 million from HM Treasury, £10 million from Arts Council England (the largest single capital award made by ACE in the South West), £4.75 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund, and £5 million from the West of England Combined Joint Committee.
This is a great start and with your help we can get even closer.
Now is your moment to transform the Hall. Click here to find out how you can help secure the next 150 years of live performance at Bristol Beacon.
The transformation of Bristol Beacon is vital for music making in the UK. I am delighted to give the campaign my support”.
Sir Simon Rattle, Music Director, London Symphony Orchestra
On Wednesday 23 September 2020 Colston Hall changed its name to Bristol Beacon, and this means we’re changing too.
Bristol Plays Music is run by Bristol Music Trust, the charity that also runs the venue formerly known as Colston Hall. These two organisations will soon unite under one name: Bristol Beacon.
Click below to find out more about how we’re changing, watch our name announcement, and discover how we want everyone to share in the joy of live music.