A series of glass slides was made of the building as it was being built. This and subsequent pictures are taken from that series. This one is a view of the back of the auditorium, looking north. Our engineering team found these slides invaluable, as they reveal exactly where the steel columns and beams are located.
This is a view of ‘front of house’ construction – the original crush lounge and circle balcony – looking south. The dome of the Alhambra can be seen in the background. The huge steel beams and columns were supplied by a Bradford company, Barratt Steel, whose name can be clearly seen. The company continues successfully today.
A view similar to the one above, but clearly taken a little later – a further row of beams has been added.
This view, looking east, shows one of the massive steel struts that support the roof.
Another view of roofing struts, this one showing two at right angles to each other.
At the centre of the original main auditorium is a huge dome. The basic structure is of steel – shown here – with a decorative plaster infill.
This is a picture of the interior of the dome, nearing completion. Although most of the plaster was removed during the 1968/9 conversion, the steel supports of the dome still remain. Our architect, Tim Ronalds, intends to use this steel work, combined with the huge steel struts above and around it, to create a dramatic new ‘ceiling’ for the venue.
This view is of one of the dome towers, near the beginning of construction. The faience blocks can be clearly seen. One of our experts, Jon Wilson, has examined the present state of the building’s faience work, and although a fair amount of repair and some replacement blocks will be needed, there is, in his opinion, nothing to cause undue concern.