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Bristol designer Diana Porter creates limited edition pins to mark the transformation of Colston Hall

Renowned Bristol jeweller Diana Porter has revealed a limited edition custom pin inspired by Colston Hall to mark the transformation of the venue.

The pins were presented as a gesture of thanks to the major donors of our Transformation project on Thursday 25 April at Diana Porter’s shop and studio workshop on Park Street.

Creating just 100 pins, the unique design is inspired by historical archive material of the hall, as well as architect’s visualisations of the new hall. Combining both the heritage and future of the hall, the original pin design reflects the 150 year history and takes particular inspiration from the historic organ.

A born and bred Bristolian, Diana Porter has had a long association with the arts in the city. Before retraining as a silversmith in 1990, Diana was an arts administrator and also operated an Arts Council funded Mobile Box Office in the 1970s which sold tickets for Colston Hall and other local arts organisations across Bristol including Hartcliffe, Filton, Broadmead and the City Museum.

Diana’s background in supporting the arts meant that she was keen to support Bristol Music Trust in our fundraising, and has designed and made these pieces of jewellery in support of the transformation project.

Louise Mitchell, chief executive of Bristol Music Trust, the organisation that runs Colston Hall, said:

“We are delighted that Diana Porter has generously given her time and talent to supporting our Transformation by creating these unique pieces of jewellery for our major donors. Her work is highly renowned in Bristol and beyond, and the fact she is both a Bristolian and has spent so many years supporting the arts makes the stunning bespoke mementos all the more meaningful. It’s a pleasure to now present the finished articles to our major donors.”

Diana Porter added:

“Growing up in Bristol, I have been aware of the Colston Hall as an important concert hall for as long as I can remember. Now, as a local jewellery designer, I was delighted to be asked to make a special lapel pin to support the renovation project. It’s an iconic venue for music in Bristol with a country wide reputation and I’m proud to be involved with its restoration and refurbishment.”

The transformation of Colston Hall will create one of the best arts and learning facilities in the country and includes remodelling and upgrading the Main Hall and The Lantern, opening up the extensive cellars for the first time in 150 years – creating a new intimate performance space and a state-of-the-art education suite – and refurbishing the historic fabric of the building.

The education suites will include new classrooms and a technology lab, providing an inspiring base to educate thousands of children every year and increasing music making sessions at the venue by 75 per cent. It will also house the National Centre for Inclusive Excellence, providing music making opportunities for young people with Special Education Needs and Disabilities.

The transformation of Colston Hall marks Bristol’s biggest-ever redevelopment programme in the arts sector. The first phase of the project involved the construction of the £20 million foyer space which opened in 2009. The rest of the building has not been refurbished for 60 years, making it the only major concert hall in the UK not to have been redeveloped in recent times.

Further information on the transformation of the Hall can be found here.