Spanish City

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Application Type

AABC Conservation

Level of Award



North East

Local Authority Area

North Tyneside

Information about this scheme

The overarching objective of the project was to bring this iconic building back to life after it lay empty for over twenty years. The Conservation Principle was to retain as much of the existing features as possible. Extensive historical research was carried out of the site, the community and the building. Archive documents such as original plans, sectional and elevation drawings, anecdotes, as well as original photos and publications about the original buildings were central to this. Externally, the conservation focus was on the reinstatement of the features that had been lost such as the tower heads and missing cupolas, the Loggias and historic shopfronts. Internally, the focus was to bring back the rotunda’s original splendour whilst providing facilities and support to sustain the use of the building for years to come. Moulds were taken for accurate reproduction and innovative reproduction techniques for the cupolas and columns were a cost-effective solution to the budget constraints. The Ground Floor of the rotunda was a dark and inflexible space due to the insertion of a first floor. One of the decisions that transformed the development potential of the entrance level was the proposal to the remove the central area to this floor. This recreated the 1910 grandeur of the triple height volume and balcony.  Additional floor space to the First Floor and the enclosure of the Loggias give added commercial viability maximizing the opportunity for use throughout the year. Service spaces are located at the periphery of the building in contemporary and sympathetic additions to limit unnecessary adaptation. Externally these extensions are contemporary and clad in perforated pre-patinated copper panels, specified in response to the unforgiving marine environment. Due to the complex geometry and levels of the existing building, a three-dimensional Revit survey was commissioned. Aspiring to BIM Level 2, this meant a collaborative and coordinated approach with all members of the Design Team from the outset. The model and survey facilitated the testing of ideas and enabled the design to evolve to suit the proposed operator. It also formed a useful tool when undertaking consultations with different stakeholders, including the conservation team and Historic England. The survey model also formed part of the Archaeological Record of the building.



North Tyneside Council

Project Manager

North Tyneside Council

Planning Consultant

North Tyneside Council

Structural Engineer

Mott Macdonald

Services Engineer

Mott Macdonald

Main Contractor


Cost Estimator


Construction Management


Acoustic Engineer

Apex Acoustics

Fire Engineering

Mott Macdonald

Building Contractor

Kymel Trading Ltd

Primary Use Class

Class D2 - Assembly and Leisure