Public Consultation

The public consultation on Colston Hall’s physical transformation plans, which was required as part of the formal planning process, ran throughout February 2017. Thank you to all who took part.

We have now reviewed all of the feedback we received and it has informed our planning application which was submitted in the summer of 2017.

Overview of the public consultation

BMT and Bristol City Council have engaged with key stakeholders, statutory consultees, near neighbours and the wider public throughout the design stages.

Who we consulted with

Statutory consultees, with whom we have sought early advice surrounding heritage issues since 2013 include:

  • Bristol City Council city design group
  • Heritage England
  • 20th Century Society
  • The Victorian Society
  • Historic England

Non-statutory consultees:

  • Bristol Civic Society
  • Bristol Neighbourhood Planning Network
  • Christmas Steps Arts Quarter
  • Conservation Advisory Panel
  • Kingsdown Conservation Group
  • Rotary Club of Bristol
  • Bristol Urban Design forum
  • Local residents and near neighbours
  • Artists including classical performers

We regularly seek customer and public feedback, and have been inviting comment on the current Hall and design proposals since 2013.

Examples:

  • Regular post event questionnaire to customers asking about the quality of our facilities
  • Doors Open Day – designs were displayed, 16 written responses submitted
  • Public consultation – a 3 week public consultation was launched in February 2017 focused around a public exhibition of the proposals on display in the foyer of Colston Hall and available on the Trust website.

As part of this consultation a number of events were held for various audiences including staff and key stakeholders, together with drop-in sessions at the exhibition for the wider public.

Particular events that were held for access groups, including:

  • Attitude is Everything
  • The British Paraorchestra
  • Bristol Physical Access Chain
  • Open Up Music
  • Live Music Now
  • University of the West of England
  • Colston Hall’s Access Register members

What we consulted on

  • Aesthetic design of the building and the key spaces including maintaining historic features and addition of new features such as the spiral staircase
  • Access through the building for those with disabilities, including access for disabled performers
  • Customer comfort including seat comfort, leg room and air conditioning
  • Redesigning the main hall balconies to improve acoustics
  • Main hall sightlines
  • Improvements to the Colston Street façade including the addition of a restaurant with a glass facade
  • Improvements to the public realm

How the stakeholder contributions and outcomes have influenced the project brief and building design

Examples include:

  • Customer feedback included – “uncomfortable seating, lack of leg room, lack of adequate ventilation and also poor facilities such as toilets”.  Our response to this includes:
    • Seating rows are wider than existing to improve accessibility and increase leg room. Some rows are extra-wide to further improve accessibility
    • Phase 2 provides an increased number of WCs, particularly for disabled people and females
    • A new mechanical ventilation system will be installed to provide fresh air into the concert hall to improve visitor comfort
  • Heritage responses: Design of Lantern Building south façade
    • This has been changed to retain more Victorian fabric and the new interventions have been scaled-down
  • Classical performers: Improve acoustics
    • Alterations to alignment of choir side walls to improve projection of sound into the audience and reduce risk of over-loudness.

Public Consultation report

To read a full report on the community involvement that formed part of the formal planning process for Colston Hall’s transformation plans, click the links below to download.

Bristol City Council Colston Hall ABC Report of Community Involvement
Appendices Document 1 of 2
Appendices Document 2 of 2

Our transformation plans

You can view the transformation plans here: View the transformation plans

Watch the video below for a guide to our plans by our Chief Executive, Louise Mitchell:

We’re building a
world-class
music
venue for Bristol