What you need to know about Battersea Arts Centre:
Battersea Arts Centre is both a great fringe theatre and a community arts centre. Along with programming and commissioning new and touring works, it also hosts a huge number of workshops each year. There’s an emphasis on nurturing youth, with both their Homegrown (12-29 year olds) and The Agency (15-25 year olds) projects.
Its programme offers a variety of experimental and more traditional plays, all in intimate settings. Battersea Arts Centre also stages immersive performances and children’s shows, along with Scratch nights showcasing new works still in development. Performances can take place in any of their old Council House rooms. So you can catch a show anywhere from the attic to an ex-Council Chamber.
Favourite acts that return to Battersea Arts Centre include the theatre company Little Bulb, whose quirky blend of live music and storytelling has won them many devoted fans. One of the most famous artists it has worked with is spoken word poet Kate Tempest.
Top facts about Battersea Arts Centre:
- In March 2015, a major fire broke out in the building. Starting in the roof, it caused huge damage to the larger spaces of the building including the Grand Hall. The tower also collapsed. Luckily, they saved around 70% of the building and it was back open just two days after the fire.
- The building is Grade II* listed. It used to be the town hall and contains around 80 rooms. It’s a lovely building, with mosaics and marble tiling on display.
- The three-day Battersea Beer Festival is held each February at the BAC.
Key information for Battersea Arts Centre:
Tube: Nearest tube stations are Stockwell (Victoria line) and Clapham Common (Northern line). However, these still leave you with a 15-20 min bus journey to the venue.
Train: A closer option is Clapham Junction station, which is well-served by trains to and from Victoria and Waterloo. It’s also on the Overground line from East London.
Buses: Bus numbers 345, 77, 87, 156 and G1, plus N77 and N345 all stop right outside Battersea Arts Centre. To plan your journey in more detail please visit the Transport for London website.
Parking: No parking facilities are provided and most of the streets nearby have parking restrictions from 8am to 6:30pm.
Step-free access is only available to the ground floor. This does include access to the Scratch Bar and the Bee’s Knees, a specially created area for young children.
Accessible toilets are available.
If you need a portable hearing loop, you can pick one up from the box office.
Working dogs are welcome. The café will provide water bowls for them on request.
To discuss all access requirements, please contact Battersea Arts Centre on 020 7223 2223
The Scratch Bar morphs from a family-friendly café in the daytime to a candle-lit bar in the evening. It comes well-stocked with craft beers and cocktails. The lunchtime menu specialises in fresh, homemade dishes, while they do a good line in cakes as well. Along with the main bar area, there’s also the Waiting Room. This is a cosy space that’s stuffed with snug sofas for you to cuddle up on whilst the log fire burns. If the weather’s balmy, you can venture out to the courtyard space.