Calls for proposals to re-open Coventry's Reel Store - The Coventry Observer

Calls for proposals to re-open Coventry's Reel Store

Coventry Editorial 20th Jul, 2023   0

A RALLYING call has been made for people to come forward with proposals on how to re-open the Reel Store after its sudden closure following the City of Culture Trust’s collapse.

The venue, the UK’s first permanent immersive digital art gallery, opened to the public last May as part of Coventry’s City of Culture year.

The lease for the Reel Store, in a former newspaper office building, is still with the Coventry City of Culture Trust which entered administration back in February. The gallery closed shortly after.

Ian Harrabin, Complex Development Projects managing director and chair of Historic Coventry Trust, said he was keen to hear proposals to re-open the Reel Store either permanently or on an interim basis.

Seeing no definitive proposals prompted him to urge people to come forward.

Mr Harrabin, also director of the Telegraph Hotel, added it was a ‘great shame’ the Reel Store had to close and vowed to do ‘all he could’ to assist a future positive use.




The gallery was home to exhibitions from across the world before its sudden closure, including an interactive display detailing the life and work of legendary artist Frida Kahlo.

The Coventry Society expressed concerns over the closure, adding it would be delighted if it could be reopened. The society’s chair, Peter Walters, said: “The Reel Store was a genuinely significant cultural legacy from Coventry’s Year of Culture that gave the city a visitor attraction of truly national importance.


“People were beginning to come here from all over the country and further afield, to experience Britain’s first permanent digital gallery.

“It was hugely disappointing to see it close in such circumstances and we would love to see the city council and funders support the rebirth of such a vital element in our city’s visitor economy.”

Visit complexdevelopmentprojects.co.uk/contact-us/ to contact Mr Harrabin.

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