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Lottery money boost to Alexandra Palace regeneration plans to re-open BBC studios

PUBLISHED: 21:11 10 May 2013 | UPDATED: 21:18 10 May 2013

How Alexandra Palace could look if ambitious regeneration plans move forward

How Alexandra Palace could look if ambitious regeneration plans move forward

Archant

Alexandra Palace is a huge leap closer to securing its future as a “treasure for the whole of Haringey” after a unanimous decision to award the “People’s Palace” more than £800,000 in funding.

Duncan Wilson OBE, chief executive of Alexandra PalaceDuncan Wilson OBE, chief executive of Alexandra Palace

The Heritage Lottery Fund today (Thursday) announced it was awarding the palace £844,800 in development-phase funding – the biggest show of confidence in the venue’s future in living memory.

The funding will now allow Alexandra Park and Palace Charitable Trust to expand on its multi-million plans, which include bringing the theatre back into use and refurbishing the former BBC television studios into a visitor experience.

It is hoped the fund will then throw its full support behind the scheme and grant Ally Pally £16.8million in further funding to allow it to complete the required construction works.

This amount will make up the major part of a £23.9million project which will transform the eastern end of the palace, making accessible to the public the most historically significant – yet currently derelict and inaccessible – parts of the building.

Chief executive Duncan Wilson said this was a “significant moment” in the future of the palace.

“Finally we can plan with confidence to bring back to life the glorious Victorian theatre and the historic BBC studios,” he said.

“The ‘People’s Palace’ in its entirety can now become a reality and we are thrilled that the fund have endorsed our plans for its future in this way.”

Less than a decade ago Alexandra Palace’s future hung in the balance, with plans to turn it into a casino only being dropped after widespread public outrage and a High Court battle.

Matt Cooke, chairman of the APPCT board, said: “This HLF funding will not only re-open derelict areas to full use and access, but will give a massive boost to the whole-site regeneration of one of London’s most exciting buildings.”

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