Preston Guild Hall
Pictured in April 2015
|Full name||Preston Guild Hall and Charter Theatre|
|Public transit||Preston bus station|
|Owner||Preston City Council|
|Operator||Preston Guild Hall Ltd|
|Type||Concert venue (Grand Hall)|
Theatre (Charter Theatre)
|Capacity||2,034 (Grand Hall)|
780 (Charter Theatre)
|Acreage||1,087 m2 (Grand Hall)|
336 m2 (Charter Theatre)
529 m2 (Foyer)
The Guild Hall was commissioned to replace the town's Public Hall. The new building, which was designed by Robert Matthew, Johnson Marshall, was due to be ready for the Preston Guild of 1972, but after construction was delayed, it only officially opened in 1973.
The complex has two performance venues, the Grand Hall which holds 2,034 people and the Charter Theatre which holds 780 people. There is direct pedestrian access, via footbridge, from the adjacent Preston bus station and car park. Artists that have performed at the venue include Martha Argerich, Morrissey, Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, The Jackson 5, Thin Lizzy, Busted and Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel among others. It also hosted the UK Snooker Championship for the years 1978 to 1997.
Until July 2014, it was owned by Preston City Council, who were considering its demolition due to its high running costs. It was then sold to local businessman Simon Rigby, who promised to spend £1m to renovate the venue. Rigby closed the venue in May 2020 and, in June 2019, he placed the business into administration. Preston City Council subsequently reclaimed possession of the building, citing the "unacceptable behaviour" of Rigby. The building was due to host the Business Expo in April 2020 but this event had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- "Music in Preston". Made in Preston. Retrieved 22 August 2020.
- "Historic Building Record: Preston Guild Hall". Preston Council. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
- About Preston Guild Hall, accessed 24 October 2014
- Venue has hosted rock royalty Lancashire Evening Post, 10 January 2013
- "Goodbye Guildhall: A look through time". Preston Hub. 8 June 2019. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
- "Preston Guild Hall could be bulldozed", BBC News, 11 January 2013, accessed 24 October 2014
- "Preston Guild Hall sold to businessman Simon Rigby", BBC News, 5 July 2014, accessed 24 October 2014
- "Preston’s Guild Hall saved", Lancashire Evening Post, 2 July 2014, accessed 24 October 2014
- "Preston Guild Hall staff laid off as owner closes venue". BBC. 30 May 2019. Retrieved 22 August 2020.
- "Guild Hall closes: Twenty full time staff have been laid off at Preston Guild Hall after it shut". www.lep.co.uk. Retrieved 2019-06-05.
- "Council reclaims troubled Guild Hall". 2019-06-21. Retrieved 2019-07-08.
- "How major Preston developments have progressed during lockdown". Lancs Live. 13 May 2020. Retrieved 22 August 2020.