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Popular Butetown music studios might have to move due to major redevelopment plans

05 May 2022 3 minutes Read
Pirate Studios

Alex Seabrook, local democracy reporter

Popular music rehearsal studios in Butetown could likely relocate to Splott due to demolition and major redevelopment plans.

Many local bands and musicians in Cardiff rehearse at Pirate Studios, on the Curran Embankment in a quiet industrial estate off Dumballs Road.

But developers Vastint are planning to redevelop the “under-utilised, low-quality industrial land” with a huge mixed-use scheme including hundreds of new apartments, called the Embankment.

What the Vastint Embankment area looks like now Picture: Google Picture: Vastint

Now Pirate Studios have applied to Cardiff council for planning permission for branded signs outside a new unit in Splott, likely to be the next home of their rehearsal studios in the city.

The new building is at the Tagomago Business Park on Dowlais Road, off Ocean Way, a couple of miles from the current studios in Butetown.

How the Vastint Embankment development would look from above Picture: Vastint

Vastint applied for planning permission for the major redevelopment in March last year. The application, which has not yet been granted, includes demolishing the existing buildings in the area, and building up to 2,500 new flats, as well as space for businesses, leisure, food and drink, retail, and health and wellbeing. The plans also include a new bridge over the Taff.

That wider part of north Butetown is seeing extensive redevelopment, with the Brains Brewery scheme under construction, as well as hundreds of flats at the top of Dumballs Road, with planning permission already secured for hundreds more apartments.

How the Vastint Embankment development would look Picture: Vastint

The Embankment redevelopment plans had previously raised concerns that Cardiff could lose the rehearsal studios, an important part of the city’s live music scene.

Nearby rehearsal studios, the Cardiff Arches, recently closed down due to a separate redevelopment, the offices under construction on John Street. The railway arches will likely become cafes and shops. A few years ago, Manic Street Preachers were also forced to leave their Faster Studios, off Trade Street, to make way for the Brewery redevelopment.

How the Vastint Embankment development would look from above Picture: Vastint

Pirate, set up in 2014 in Bristol, provides affordable 24-hour studios for musicians in several locations across the UK, as well as in Berlin and New York. It’s unclear when the relocation would take place, and the company has been approached for a comment.


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