Unicorn Theatre

Keith Williams Architects, London, 2006


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Front elevation showing the main entrance and cantilevered education room 

Dennis Gilbert (website)     Download Original

  • Front elevation showing the main entrance and cantilevered education room    
  • View along Tooley Street showing the rear     
  • The foyer: low glazed cut-outs in the concrete balconies allow children to look out    
  • The education room with view out onto Tooley Street    
  • View from the landing out to Tooley Street    
  • The form of the auditorium is derived from the principle of the story-teller gathering his audience around him    
  • The rehearsal room: backstage finishes revert to more utilitarian economy    
  • Interlocking volumes, voids and openings run like a leitmotif throughout the building    
  • Foyer level plan    
  • Mezzanine level plan    
  • Stage-level plan showing geometric concept patterns    
  • Section    
  • Detail of copper cladding    
  • Gutter detail on facade    

Theatre for children and young people located near London Bridge and the Thames

The building houses a 320 seat theatre, a studio theatre, education, teaching and rehearsal spaces and a public foyer and café.

The design derived from careful assimilation of the internal program, a considered attitude towards the building's context, and opportunity to treat the project's formal composition sculpturally.

It is an asymmetric pavilion. Its elevations are open and transparent in places to reveal the heart of the building to the public. The materials used are arranged to reinforce the buildings masses, the copper of the Weston Theatre contrasts with the blue glazed brick faience that surrounds the stage door. Bright stucco and blue engineering brick are used elsewhere.


  • Begun: Feb 2004
  • Completed: 2006
  • Floor area: 3,640m2
  • Sector: Arts and culture
  • Total cost: £9.2M
  • Tender date: Jul 2003
  • Procurement: JCT 98 Private without quantities/ two-stage procurement
  • Address: 104 Tooley Street, London, SE1 2HZ, United Kingdom

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