Portrush Town Hall was designed by Lanyon, Lynn & Lanyon, and built by Thomas Stewart Dickson of Larne. The Earl of Antrim provided the land for the building to the Portrush Town Hall and Assembly Rooms Company, and that organisation entered into a 99 year lease with him in November 1871, paying an annual rent of £15. As the local town hall it was the administrative centre for the town, and in the last war ration books and gas masks were distributed from it. In 1928 the hall was extended to provide the present theatrical stage, with offices below it. Later still in the 1960s the old circular Reading Room, by then the town’s Library, became the Council Chamber, but when Portrush lost its autonomy and was absorbed within Coleraine Borough Council the hall lost a major part of its historic function. The theatre continued to be used until the building was closed in 1997.
ONE of the Borough’s most familiar landmarks, Portrush Town Hall, has been brought back to life following an extensive restoration and refurbishment programme of both the interior and exterior building. The 18 month project to restore Portrush Town Hall to its former glory has been completed.
The old cinema projection room which was once housed in concrete and dominated the main hall has been removed and now the elegant arched windows bath the room in light as originally intended. A musician’s gallery has been restored along the full length of the hall and delicate plasterwork has re–emerged from behind thick layers of paint.
This was an award winning project for the practice with the redevelopment winning the RIBA Conservation Award for 2006