- 24 September 2008
Last week, as work on the concrete floors and frame of the auditorium draws to a close, the next major phase of the construction work was beginning, out of view from the town but clearly visible from across the river. This is the steel frame of the new actors' accommodation adjacent to the Swan Theatre. It is being undertaken by Billingtons: a new trade contractor to the site but not to the project team as a substantial part of their early work is the prefabrication of the steel frame, done in their works in the North.
This week Billingtons work reaches a much more public phase, with the arrival of a large mobile crane which is putting together the prefabricated sections of the giant roof trusses that will span the new thrust stage. They are strong enough to bear the load of theatre equipment and scenery and - once assembled - will be lifted into place by an even larger crane shortly.
Meanwhile work still continues in the depths of the new stage basement: the other tool in the scenic box of tricks, providing a "hell" to match the new "heaven" being created above.