Join the Academy Performing Arts in their new home at the Eltham Centre from Monday 9th September 2019. 

Introducing the Academy Performing Arts at The Eltham Centre

Academy Performing Arts (APA) via Better, have been renting the current premises (a former Royal Military Academy) in the Woolwich Arsenal, from the Council at a subsidised rate and on a temporary basis. This arrangement was based on the agreement that the Council would need the building back when it was ready to refurbish the Academy as part of its ambitious Woolwich Works regeneration scheme.

The building that APA  have been fortunate to call home until now is over two hundred years old and has special listed status given by Historic England to protect it for future generations. It has been in a poor state of repair for a long time and only the ground floor has been accessible to the public for classes. As part of the Woolwich Works the whole building will be completely refurbished and Historic England will be able to remove it from its ‘At Risk Building’ register.

What is Woolwich Works?

Woolwich Works, previously known as the Woolwich Creative District, is a £31m council-led restoration of five historic buildings in the Arsenal to create a 15,000sqm complex of theatres, dance studios and places to eat. The redevelopment includes the former Royal Military Academy as well as The Fireworks Factory, The Cartridge Factory, The Carriageworks and The Laboratory.

What arts companies will be part of Woolwich Works?

Punchdrunk, the world-renowned theatre company, is just one of the big-name tenants that will move into the site when it opens in 2020 alongside a number of local, national and internationally acclaimed artists, including Europe's first majority black and minority ethnic orchestra, Chineke! Orchestra, and Woolwich-based Protein Dance.

Why can’t the Academy Performing Arts move back to its old home once the building work is finished?

The works to the Academy could take two to three years to complete. From 2020, it is hoped that we will also have satellite hubs in Plumstead and other locations as part of our commitment to nurturing local talented young performing artists. There will also be the option of hiring some of the other dance studios that open in other parts of the Woolwich Works development, as the Council will be letting 70% of the site to community groups such as Better/APA at subsidised rates. 

Why is the Academy Performing Arts’ new location in Eltham?

The Council recognises the great grassroots work that APA has done over the last seven years, but there are a limited number of suitable premises in the borough. The Eltham Centre has been identified as the best venue and there are lots of positives about relocating there. 

What does this mean for current students?

We understand the relocation may be inconvenient for some current students and welcome your feedback on the new location. We will be working to accommodate as many existing as well as new customers to our new space. 

As a goodwill gesture, we will be offering current students a £10 discount. Simply email us and we’ll send you further details.

If you wish to enrol or top up your classes for Academy Performing Arts this September, the majority of our new timetable will be taking place at the Eltham Centre.

Music Students important information

Please note, all music courses will be moving to direct debit from September 2019.

If you wish to book your lessons, please contact us to confirm your teacher/space and set up your direct debit by emailing us.  

How do I claim my £10 discount?

Simply email us and we’ll send you further details.

How do I get to the Eltham Centre?

The Centre is next to Eltham High Street and has excellent transport links. It is on bus routes B16, 124, 126, 132, 160, 321 and 286 and near Eltham Train Station. The Centre also has a pay and display car park with 45 total spaces, including four disabled spaces, and cycle storage for 12 bikes.

More about The Eltham Centre

From a swimming pool and fitness centre to gym machines and free weights, The Eltham Centre has a café with free Wi-Fi and a library. With a mixture of chain and independent stores along the high street, as well as a brand new cinema, Nando’s and Pizza Express, there'll be plenty to keep you entertained around the centre.

Further information

Please visit our home page from 19th August, for further details on the new timetables, music tuition, booking and other useful information.

Should you have any queries about the relocation, booking or purchasing a uniform, please contact a member of the team via email.

The team will be at the Eltham Centre to welcome you to our new home week commencing Monday 9th September. We do hope you can join us and look forward to seeing you all again.