Building of the Month January 2021 - Albert Hall, Swansea
Swansea's Albert Hall in 2017 (Eveleigh Photography)
The Albert Hall in the late 1960s with its original lettering (Mark Albert)
Punters queuing outside the Albert Hall for the premiere of Jaws in 1975 (Local Campaign)
The colourful interior of the Albert Hall in 2019 (WalesOnline)
Swansea's Albert Hall opened in 1864 as a music hall which hosted speeches by some of the big names in Victorian society including Charles Dickens, Oscar Wilde and David Lloyd George. After it ceased use as a music hall in 1922, it has served as a cinema and a bingo hall, before finally closing in 2007. Having stood standing empty and deteriorating since 2007, the grade II listed hall is now in desperate need of restoration and new use.
Previous plans to convert the building into student accommodation and retail space in 2017/18 sadly fell through. However, hopes springs eternal for the the 156-year old building following its sale to local property developer LoftCo in May 2020 for a reported £7 million. According to local press, LoftCo plan to convert and bring the hall back into use as a music venue, with office space, flats and a roof top bar, subject to planning approval.
Further details on the plans are expected later the year, so watch this space.