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Pilbrow & Partners at our Venice and London Future Cities Forums

Above: CGI of Pilbrow & Partners' internal restoration and re-modelling of the Granada MDM Cinema in Walthamstow, east London.

Future Cities Forum has invited Fred Pilbrow, founder of Pilbrow & Partners to our culture and sustainability forums in Venice and London this September.

At our Venice forum we will be discussing how the city's cultural offer can evolve with a new form of sustainable tourism that does not endanger the ecology of the lagoon on which the city is built. Some museums have formed themselves into a cultural mile, to promote the wider offer of art in the city and draw tourists away from the over-populated squares such as San Marco. Large cruise ships have created wash which is undercutting the lagoon banks, while sea levels are rising which causes flooding of heritage sites.

Fred has experience of working with heritage and cultural sites. One of these is the important art deco era EMD Granada cinema in Walthamstow, east London. The site comprises a Grade II* listed super cinema, recognised to be of national significance as a rare surviving example of the extravagant and flamboyant work of the Granada Group, their famed architect, Cecil Aubrey Masey, and interior designer, Theodore Komisarjevsky, at the height of the cinema boom of the 1930s. The restoration of the EMD will form the centrepiece of the wider, culturally-led regeneration initiative, promoted by Waltham Forest. The cultural and educational uses will be supported by restaurants and bars. In totality, the site will thus become a vibrant hub of activity by day and night and a major contributor to the local economy. This project enables Waltham Forest to further establish itself as a key player in London’s creative and cultural scene with a unique cultural identity and serves the Borough aspirations to become London’s first Borough of Culture in 2019. The project will create a destination for East London and support the growing evening economy.

At our British Film Institute forum on 'Creative Cities', Fred joined Gavin Poole, CEO of Here East, to talk about the important growth of film studios in the UK to support the creative industries. Here East is engaged in the planning of new film studios in east London.

At Here East, Fred will be discussing the above issues on a panel with the V&A Museum COO Tim Reeve, the Head of Futures at The London College of Fashion / UAL, Linda Roberts and the Leader of Islington Council, Cllr Kaya Comer-Swartz. Both the V&A and The London College of Fashion are creating new buildings and studios at Here East, while Islington has been included in the expansion of three new Creative Enterprise Zones for the Capital by the Mayor of London.


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