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New look shell of Wellington pier

PUBLISHED: 09:00 20 February 2008 | UPDATED: 10:28 03 July 2010

Like a steel colossus it towers over Great Yarmouth's seafront.

The new look shell of the Wellington pier theatre has sprung up as part of a £2m project to breathe fresh life into the historic site.

Like a steel colossus it towers over Great Yarmouth's seafront.

The new look shell of the Wellington pier theatre has sprung up as part of a £2m project to breathe fresh life into the historic site.

Three years ago the theatre's metal was dismantled so the structure could be cleaned and refurbished.

The work is the next stage of an ambitious scheme to transform the 150-year-old theatre into a family entertainment centre with bowling alleys, bars and a restaurant. But the famous look of the theatre, which once hosted such household names as Morecambe and Wise and Bruce Forsyth, will be preserved as its distinctive copper domed towers, curved roof and buttresses will be reinstated.

Originally it was feared that the whole building would have to be demolished because of concerns over repair costs and asbestos but a survey showed that the site could be redeveloped instead.

Architects Art Tech Design Services, of Yarmouth, said the new centre is expected to be finished in September - a year later than expected.

The pier theatre work is being funded by a National Lottery grant and Family Amusements, of Essex, which leases the building from the borough council.

Family Amusements took over the lease from comic Jim Davidson in 2001.

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