The Green Room is a new neighbourhood restaurant, bar and garden, created by Coin Street Community Builders in collaboration with the National Theatre.
Coin Street Community Builders own the site and developed the restaurant, which the National Theatre were invited to operate as a tenant. The National Theatre also carried out the kitchen fit-out. The architect and project manager for the scheme was Benjamin Marks.
The restaurant, which has just opened, is situated next to Rambert Dance Studios (also developed by Coin Street), behind the theatre on London’s South Bank.
Local social enterprise Coin Street Community Builders worked together with the National Theatre to create the new restaurant, which features an airy, contemporary space complete with props and scenery recycled from National Theatre shows. These include pendant lights and furniture from theatre productions.
Surrounding the Green Room is an urban oasis: a sustainable garden designed and maintained by the Bankside Open Spaces Trust with volunteers from the theatre and local area.
Inspired by the very successful pop-up bar, Propstore, the Green Room will be the National Theatre’s first off-site restaurant. The restaurant will be open for five years until the space is needed for permanent redevelopment.
Mark Simpson, Head of Catering at the National Theatre said:
“Coin Street Community Builders are a social enterprise which has been in this area for a long time and are a great organisation to work with. They engage with a lot of the existing catering outlets and pop up bars on our site already.
“They owned a plot of land they wanted to use located at the back of our building, so they came to us with a plan to build a restaurant on it, with us as the tenants. We’re marketing the venue as a new neighbourhood restaurant which will be run with run with strong community values and in an ethical manner. The restaurant will offer a grill-based English diner menu with locally sourced ingredients
“Every decision we have made from the outset of the programme has sustainability and ethics at its core – for example we have sourced furniture from a small local furniture maker.
“This is a really important project for the National Theatre, because we now have the opportunity to take our brand outside to the high street, which is a fantastic opportunity to show that we are really good at what we do.”
Project architect Benjamin Marks, said:
“Previously the street on which the Green Room is located did not have very much to offer the passer-by, so part of the idea for the design was to develop the site in such a way as to create an active frontage and animate the area to offer something for the pedestrian. The design, with its extensively glazed facade and garden at the front is geared to making the street part of the public realm.
“The informal restaurant and bar is food-led, but people could go there for just for a drink. There’s also a covered outside terrace and a garden – so there are a variety of different environments that can be used in different ways throughout the year.”
The building is on a corner site with two glazed facades and two closed facades. The restaurant has 100 covers, with a further 20 at the bar and around 40 on the outside terrace. The garden incorporates retained mature trees, as well as hard and soft landscaping and planters.
“It is hugely important to me to be involved with something like this. The neighbourhood restaurant is very much a collaboration between the two organisations and having the theatre involved in this way is fantastic,” he added.
Catering Systems specialise in the design and installation of commercial kitchens for the hospitality and leisure sector. The firm have been in operation for 15 years and since their inception have worked for a wide range of clients and projects.
Simon Crafter, the Managing Director of Catering Systems, commented:
“At The Green Room we worked very closely with the client, main contractor, developer and designer which lead to the smooth progression of the kitchen and bar installation.”
“This scheme was important to be involved with as we have worked a lot with The National Theatre this year and it was an exiciting project to end the year with. We wish all at The Green Room and National Theatre all the very best.”