A proposed £3 million revamp of Kirkcaldy’s Adam Smith Theatre should be completed within two years’ time, according to the team behind it.
Fife Cultural Trust, which manages the historic venue on behalf of Fife Council, says construction work to refurbish and repurpose the famous auditorium, café/public space and Beveridge Suite is expected to begin in the autumn of 2021 and finish in time for the 2022 Christmas pantomime.
A pause in construction has also been pencilled in for November 2021 to January 2022 to accommodate next year’s festive show after the 2020 programme was wrecked by the impact of Covid-19 restrictions.
A business case has been drawn up which highlights the key aim of turning the Adam Smith Theatre into a “vibrant cultural and community hub”.
Bosses want to create a “first class centre for Fife festivals” which currently attract more than 200,000 visitors to the Lang Toun each year.
Councillor Neil Crooks, Kirkcaldy area committee convener, said it would be a “great boost” for the town.
“Fife has a wealth of creative talent and it is important that we nurture that talent and help it grow,” he said.
“Having a state-of-the-art facility will help us keep that talent in Fife and attract more from across Scotland so that the whole of the region can benefit.”
In a project update, the trust confirmed phase one will focus on the auditorium upgrade, with new seating and removable seating sections, a new sound system, new carpets and a paint job all due to be done by summer 2021.
Phase two will see the café area redeveloped to incorporate venue space and develop space to accommodate a creative hub.
This phase also includes an upgrade of the Beveridge Suite and lower hall and improving access.
It was originally envisaged that the FCT would move its staff from Iona House to the Beveridge Suite, but that plan appears to have been shelved following public consultation.
Instead, FCT aims to maximise the suite as a large multi-functional space that can be used for performance as well as events, with plans also in place to create a mobile bar space, self-contained toilets and a catering kitchen. New mobile staging and track curtains will also ensure that the suite can be versatile.
A contractor to carry out the bulk of the work is expected to be appointed in the spring.