Swansea gallery back on track

Simon Stephens, 05.03.2014
Work restarts on £5.2m revamp of Glynn Vivian Art Gallery
Work restarted this week on Swansea’s Glynn Vivian Art Gallery after the original contractor for the £5.2m redevelopment went into administration last summer.

Swansea Council appointed John Weaver Contractors to finish the project, which is now expected to be completed by spring 2015. The gallery, which closed for the redevelopment in 2011, was originally to have reopened later this year. Opco Construction was the first contractor.

The project is going ahead in its entirety and will include a new shop and entrance to the 1970s wing, conservation of the 1911 gallery, more space for displays and exhibitions, a new lecture space and community room, a welcome area for learning programmes, a dedicated library and archive and better access throughout.

“Even though these are difficult financial times for councils across the UK, we’re very serious about our commitment to art and culture,” said David Phillips, the leader of Swansea Council. “Although it’s vital we maintain essential services to the public, we also think facilities like our museums, art galleries, theatres and libraries are important to Swansea’s wellbeing too.”

Phillips said he did not want Swansea to become “a place where nobody wants to live because there’s nothing to do”.

The work is being funded by the Welsh Government, including £550,000 from the Swansea Regeneration Area programme; the Arts Council of Wales; Cadw; and Swansea Council.