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Sto Helps Refurbish A Major West End Theatre

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Sto provided a combination of bespoke architectural profiles, external wall insulation, external render and paint finish for this theatre project

An integrated portfolio of products provided by Sto has been used to help refurbish one of the most famous theatres in London’s West End. Sto provided a combination of bespoke architectural profiles, external wall insulation, external render and paint finish for the project, which has seen the Victoria Palace Theatre undergo a major programme of extension and refurbishment works costing over £60 million.

“The theatre was designed by theatre architect Frank Matcham in 1910, and it’s recently undergone major changes both internally and externally,” explains Julian Middleton of project architects, Aedas Arts Team. “The aim of the project was to maximize the potential of the stage and fly tower, extend the back-of-house facilities and improve the auditorium, all whilst retaining the building’s historic features.”

Externally, the theatre’s façades were extended, as was the stage house and the existing roofscape was also completely rationalised. Throughout the process, great care had to be taken to preserve existing architectural detailing and to reproduce it on the new sections of the building. This was especially true of the building façades where various cornice, corbel and column detailing had to be reproduced. Bespoke StoDeco façade profiles were designed to match the original features by Sto’s technical team in Germany.

The StoDeco range of profiles are manufactured from Verolith – a lightweight and easily workable natural material which can be machined to create accurate reproductions of existing architectural details. The resulting profiles have excellent resistance to damage, cracking, weathering and environmental influences, and as in this case, they can be used to seamlessly restore or extend existing building façades. For this project they were finished with StoColor Maxicryl paint, which provides high water-repellence and reliable colour-fastness.

“This was a large and complex project which posed plenty of challenges,” adds Matthew Mooney of Novo Facades, an authorized applicator for Sto products. “Sto’s technical team worked closely with us, Aedas Arts Team and the theatre management to create the new feature elements that were required, and the results were extremely successful. We also worked together to produce the most appropriate thermal insulation solution for the theatre.”

StoTherm Mineral K external wall insulation was selected for this purpose. Based on a mineral fibre insulation board, this BBA-certified system delivers outstanding thermal insulation, and is particularly suitable for this type of project where different types of substrates are involved. It was applied to the theatre using a Sto adhesive mortar which allowed for fast and accurate installation, and then finished with StoSilco – a silicone resin external render that provides a durable and reliable finish.

The Victoria Palace Theatre is owned by renowned international theatrical producer, Cameron Mackintosh who was closely involved with the refurbishment project.