What is East Bank?
East Bank brings together world-class experiences from the BBC, Sadler’s Wells, UAL’s London College of Fashion, University College London and the V&A.
UAL’s London College of Fashion welcomes staff and students to its state-of-the-art new campus this year, where it is also hosting a vibrant programme of exhibitions, showcases and performances for the public.
Meanwhile located south of the ArcelorMittal Orbit, UCL East’s campus is also now fully open and delivering multi-disciplinary education and research for around 4,000 students as well as creative learning, events and activities open to all.
Two new public squares will open later in 2023, providing shared, inclusive spaces for anyone to visit and enjoy. They will host outdoor events, showcase new public art, and provide new opportunities to connect with the Park’s biodiversity and nature.
From 2024, experience world-class dance at Sadler’s Wells East – a 550-seat theatre and hip-hop academy, and from 2025 immerse yourself in global creativity at V&A East’s brand new Museum and Storehouse (located at Here East).
East Bank will complete with the opening of the BBC Music studios’ state-of-the-art facilities for performance, broadcast, and recording in 2025.
East Bank Impact
The East Bank partners have been working with the community in east London since project planning began in 2015. To find out more about what we have achieved together, you can read our latest Impact Report here.
What will be built here?
- Sadler's Wells will open a new 550-seat theatre presenting the best UK and international dance work; and establish a new centre for choreographic practice and a hip hop academy, both of which will be the first of their kind in the country.
- UAL's London College of Fashion will integrate its six sites onto one state-of-the-art campus, accommodating 6,500 students with their world-leading research community, business incubation and social enterprise centre, alongside public open spaces, galleries, libraries and archives.
- The V&A will display its world-famous collections at two sites. There will be a new museum to explore the V&A’s renowned collection, which will include a curated space with pioneering exhibitions, gallery displays and spaces for community-led projects. In the north of the Park, the V&A will open a new Collection and Research Centre at Here East. In the heart of this innovation district, the V&A will revolutionise access to the museum’s vast collection of art, design and performance.
- The state-of-the-art BBC Music studios will provide a hub from which to celebrate music of all genres. It will be a new home for the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Chorus and rock and pop recording facilities with access to the public for performances.
- UCL will create a new campus, UCL East, providing multi-disciplinary research, teaching and innovation, in areas as diverse as robotics, smart cities, culture and conservation, for around 4,000 students.
- Take a look at our most recent transformation time-lapse video to view the construction progress.
A world-class cultural and education district requires world-class partners. East Bank will bring together renowned institutions that for decades, if not centuries, have been at the forefront of artistic excellence, learning, research, creativity, curatorship and public engagement.
A core purpose of the BBC is the performing, recording and broadcasting of live music across a full range of genres to the widest possible audience. The relocation of its music studios to East Bank is driven by this purpose and builds on the BBC’s role as Olympic Broadcaster. The new site will include state of the art recording facilities and will be the home of the world-renowned BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, with a substantial presence from the BBC Concert Orchestra. It will host recording sessions and live performances across all genres from global stars to emerging talent. These facilities, alongside an extensive programme of learning and outreach projects and collaborations with partners in the cultural district, will contribute to establishing east London as a world destination for music.
Sadler’s Wells is a world-leading creative organisation dedicated to dance in all its forms. With over three centuries of theatrical heritage and a year-round programme of performances and learning activities, its goal is to motivate everyone to experience dance – to take part, learn, experiment and be inspired. Audiences of over half a million come to Sadler’s Wells’ London theatres each year, with many more enjoying its touring productions globally and online. Sadler’s Wells East will present the best UK and international work created for the mid-scale and offer life-changing training, development and learning opportunities through its choreographic centre, hip hop academy and participatory activities. This new space for dance will help to further develop the art form, reach wider audiences and establish London as the dance capital of the world.
UAL's London College of Fashion
Founded in 1906, London College of Fashion is a leader in fashion design, media and business education. Part of the University of the Arts London, it has been nurturing creative talent for over a century, offering courses in all things fashion. It encourages students to examine the past and challenge the present, to form their own ideas.
It gives them the skills, opportunities – and above all, the freedom – to put those ideas into practice. Digital developers will work alongside designers; psychologists will collaborate with image creators; and marketing theorists will join forces with curators. London College of Fashion, UAL will redefine what fashion is by connecting its range of disciplines for the first time and under one roof, and show London and the world what these possibilities look like.
University College London
UCL is recognised as one of the world’s top 10 universities and first in the UK for the strength of its research. Now, in the single biggest development since the university was founded nearly 200 years ago, UCL will create their new UCL East campus. Home to the new and pioneering, around 4,000 students and 260 academic staff will immerse themselves in issues of manufacturing, making, transport, artificial intelligence, sustainability, urbanisation, social inclusivity, and more. UCL’s two buildings will include cutting-edge laboratories and research space, state-of-the-art teaching facilities, student accommodation and accessible public spaces. The campus will break down conventional barriers across research, education, innovation and public engagement, and enable local collaborations with schools, charities and community organisations. As part of East Bank, UCL East will help to unlock the potential for Stratford and east London to become a world-class centre of achievement in science, technology, creativity and innovation.
The V&A East project will create two ambitious and complementary new sites at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The brand-new museum will stage exhibitions, events and collaborations and promote diverse ideas, voices and new work. 10-minutes’ walk away at Here East, a world-class collection and research centre will open up the V&A’s extensive collections with unprecedented access to thousands of objects not currently on display. This major new resource will be a creative sourcebook for all, from school pupils and students, to makers, creatives and researchers, as well as local communities and businesses, and visitors from across the country and around the world.
The Mayor of London
The Mayor of London has provided £385 million of funding to inspire a whole new generation of Londoners to pursue their creative ambitions. This new creative cluster will bring together world-leading cultural and educational institutions to give young Londoners the chance to explore career opportunities, create jobs for local people and provide an economic boost for the capital.
Foundation for Future London
Foundation for FutureLondon fundraises for the people, places and organisations of the East Bank, London’s new innovation, arts, and creative quarter. It works with east London, London, UK and global partners, philanthropists and funding foundations to create real opportunities for our local communities.
London Legacy Development Corporation
The London Legacy Development Corporation is the Mayor of London’s development corporation for Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and the surrounding area. Working with the LLDC and with support for central government, the Mayor is working with local authorities, cultural businesses and venues, artists, creative entrepreneurs and civil society to make sure the full potential is realised for London and for Londoners.
The principles of sustainability have been embedded from outset of the project, with a strong focus on healthy buildings and energy efficiency. The buildings are all targeting BREEAM Excellent.
The project is now onsite and environmental measures are embedded. Examples to date include:
- On site, the team have upcycled construction materials such as cable reels into tables, pallets into planters and built a bug hotel and space for bee hives to encourage environmental activity on and around our site!
They are also working with start-ups such as After:Work, an award-winning social enterprise, on an ethical mission to reduce the amount of landfill by upcycling our used project PPE into wearable accessories.
They are using Day Old (a surplus food enterprise tackling both food waste and food poverty) to cater our team treats and team lunches. The orders help to save food from landfill and provide school lunches for children in need.