Fairfield Halls

Fairfield Halls

The Fairfield Halls is a renowned 1960’s concert venue in the heart of the London Borough of Croydon.

The Redevelopment Project was a major refurbishment to modernise the complete building including its historic Concert Hall, Ashcroft Theatre, foyer and front and back of house areas. The project also included the addition of new multi-function and gallery spaces, a community café and an improved public external realm.

Max Fordham provided M&E, Acoustic, Lighting and BREEAM services. 

The Fairfield Halls are at the centre of a wider Croydon Cultural District masterplan; thus, extensive enabling site infrastructure works and diversions were undertaken, including the reinforcement of the local HV network for future phases of the concept. A new energy centre was designed as part of the refurbishment to provide a new district heat network for both Fairfield Halls and the adjacent future Fairfield Homes development. Max Fordham designed high efficiency ventilation systems with heat recovery, mechanical cooling, improved controls and air distribution. The project is aiming to achieve BREEAM Excellent for the new multi-functional gallery and cafe.

The acoustic design for the concert hall retains the highly regarded acoustics of the original auditorium, while also improving flexibility for different types of performance by adding motorised acoustic banners. The new ventilation system has bespoke noise control to achieve very low noise levels despite constraints on duct routes and location of air-supply points. The final result is a "crystal-clear acoustic" in the hall.  

Our overarching ambition in re-lighting Fairfield Halls was to restore the original character of the venue but use the latest technologies to minimise energy costs and increase flexibility and control. Therefore, we created bespoke lighting fixtures, both by refurbishing and adapting what was already on site and by designing new lights based on old photographs and archive evidence. Fortunately, a long-term partner in lighting, Dernier & Hamlyn, was based locally and developed the design and manufacture of the fittings. The team’s extensive knowledge about the heritage of lighting helped ensure the new scheme met all our aspirations.

All new, energy efficient building services are carefully integrated into the historic fabric, complement the architecture of the new spaces and provide healthy, comfortable environments for audiences and performers alike.

Fairfield Halls “reinstates many of the original features from the original 1962 modernist building, while creating sustainable, inspiring spaces that will benefit the community for generations to come.” – Magnus Wills, Project Architect, MICA








London Borough of Croydon and Brick by Brick Ltd

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The Concert Hall's internationally renowned acoustic environment has been preserved and further improved by adding a series of concealed, motorised acoustic banners to allow the acoustic to be varied for different types of performance.
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The iconic Ashcroft Playhouse has been fully restored and serviced with state-of-the-art audio-visual and electrical systems.
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The bespoke main foyer lighting reflects the building's original ceiling design and creates a clean and inviting arrival space.
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Natural daylight creates a light and airy feel to the front of house spaces. Integrated blinds offer solar glare control while maintaining connectivity to the outside.
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Original 1960's heritage chandeliers were refurbished with high efficiency LED light sources and dimming control.
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The new building services have all been sensitively integrated into the building's architecture, thoroughly modernising the building with modern ventilation and comfort features expected of a 21st century performance venue whilst preserving the quality and iconic features of each area.