I started watching the building of the new Phoenix from the time they put metal hoardings around the site and started digging a big hole for its foundations. Over the months it grew from the mud, took on an angular, modern form and was finally painted an interesting mustard colour.
Last Thursday the process came to its fruition with the grand opening. I turned up at the stroke of 2pm when the doors opened and found myself in a throng of exited Leicester folk, all eager to explore. I don’t think many of them could have been disappointed.
The building contains three theatres, the largest seating 250, the smallest a cosy 30. There is also a television/film studio, sound recording and editing suites, educational facilities, display areas and the obligatory cafe.
Curiously, the building also contains living accommodation and office space for rent. I have yet to figure out whether this was for economic reasons, or perhaps in response to some planning requirement. Time will tell how this aspect of the place works out.
Leicester's cultural quarter is now host to the architecturally impressive Curve theatre, the LCB Depot - home to exhibition space and many creative businesses, and the new Phoenix. Has anything been missed?
A home for Leicester's writers perhaps?