Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is thrilled to announce that it has been listed Grade II by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) on Historic England’s advice, in celebration of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. The Theatre is one of six sites across the country to be listed and is the only site to be listed in London.
Ranging from a hotel and an archive to a church and markers on a major motorway, the listings aim to highlight some of the many important places from Her Majesty’s reign and to reflect the important social, technical and cultural changes which have taken place over the past 70 years.
Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch is a quintessential 1970s modernist theatre, named after the Queen. The Theatre was opened in 1975 by Sir Peter Hall, Director of the National Theatre. It first occupied a site in Station Lane, Hornchurch from 1953, in a converted cinema building. The current purpose-built theatre building, designed by the London Borough of Havering architect R.W. Hallam and project architect Norman Brooks, was opened in 1975 on Billet Lane, Hornchurch. It is a distinctive and well-designed example of 1970s theatre design and remains relatively intact. The external features are clearly influenced by the work of renowned German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The Queen visited with the Duke of Edinburgh in 2003 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the theatre on its original site, which also coincided with the 50th anniversary of Her Majesty’s coronation, the reason for its naming as Queen’s Theatre. The visit is commemorated with a plaque still held by the Theatre.
Mathew Russell, Chief Executive, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch said “We’re so proud that Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch has been Grade II listed, and to celebrate such a very special occasion. The theatre is a much loved and well utilised asset, at the heart of a changing community. This is an amazing opportunity to recognise its rich heritage, and as we approach our 70th anniversary, to help ensure an extraordinary and special building can continue to be enjoyed and cherished by many more millions of people into the future.”
Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive, Historic England said “These new listings celebrate the diversity and richness of our heritage overseen by Her Majesty during her 70-year reign, showing how the fabric of the nation has changed and developed. These sites cover the length and breadth of the country – from All Saints’ Church near Birmingham, which she opened in 1955 when she was newly crowned, to the high-tech Hampshire Public Records Office, completed in 1993.”
Nigel Huddleston, Heritage Minister said “These historic sites provide a fantastic opportunity to reflect on how much life in the UK has changed during Her Majesty the Queen’s 70-year reign. Listing them as part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations is a fitting way to pay tribute to the longevity of her service.”
The listings complement Historic England’s recently-launched educational online story map, which shows The Queen visiting heritage sites throughout the country as a celebration of the Platinum Jubilee.