Apex is nearly a year old – so time for a make-over

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IT has been open for less than a year, but The Apex in Bury St Edmunds could already be about to get its first facelift to improve its ‘bland’ front.

St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s cabinet is due to discuss next week investing £140,000 on improvements to the front of the heavily subsised building which opened in October last year.

“There has been concern expressed about the blandness of the open space immediately outside The Apex.

“In response to this designs have been developed which privide for new external signage, information boards, seating areas and accompanying planting, as well as canopies and umbrellas,” said the report to next Wednesday’s cabinet meeting.

Cabinet members will be asked to give approval to designs which have already been given the nod by ING, the company that manages the arc.

The foyer area could also undergo a £30,000 revamp with the money spent on lighting, atrwork, seating and point of sale units which will be used to sell merchandise at concerts and help with conference management.

And a further £50,000 may also be allocated towards a new bar offering catering and a bistro café, and a mobile bar service in the foyer. The council hopes this investment will bring a greater return to the taxpaper

The report said £100,000 of this money is within an existing budget while another £35,000 can be made available from a pot of cash set aside for signage or display equipment, leaving the council to find the rest of the money from the taxpayer.

Despite the need for investment, the council says the first year of its £18.7 million building has been a ‘tremendous success’.

“The Apex in Bury opened in October 2010 and in its first year of operation has demonstrated its potential as both an artistic and community venue,” said the cabinet report.

“The auditorium has been particularly outstanding in delivering a highly successful artistic programme. It has developed a local, regional, national and international reputation for acoustic excellence and a huge range of musical activity.”