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At the heart of Royal Opera House Thurrock is the impressive – and eco-friendly – Bob and Tamar Manoukian Production Workshop. This is where sets for the Royal Opera House are built by teams of highly-skilled Scenic artists, carpenters, draughtsman, and metalworkers. The area is also home to Backstage Centre; a flagship national training centre for Creative & Cultural Skills; and High House Artists’ Studios. The 39 artists’ studios and four work/live units are managed by Acme Studios.

Also on site are Grade II listed barns, from which it has delivered a Learning and Community engagement programme for the local and wider community since 2006. Before this date the ROH Production Workshops were based in Beckton, East London.

Learning and Participation in Thurrock

Royal Opera House Thurrock’s education programme aims to inspire, support and develop the learning and creativity of people of all ages through their engagement with the Royal Opera House and to enrich the cultural life of the local community in Thurrock.

Over 60,000 people have joined in with ROH Thurrock activity since 2007. They have participated in activities ranging from schools projects to teacher training, from work-based learning to fully-staged community operas. People in Thurrock have both been able to watch special performances and gain a very special insight into the behind-the-scenes process. Between October 2008 and September 2011, the Royal Opera House delivered the Creative Partnerships programme across the Thames Gateway region, managing 120 school projects each year.

In April 2012, the Royal Opera House agreed to become a Bridge Organisation, working to connect children and young people to great art and culture across Essex, North Kent, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.

In 2014 the Royal Opera House began the Thurrock Trailblazer programme, a Cultural Entitlement Pathfinder Initiative in partnership with Thurrock Council. The Royal Opera House has been working with a wide range of cultural organisations to deliver both in and out of school activities. Since the programme started, Thurrock Trailblazer has worked with 33 schools and over 8000 students.

The Bob and Tamar Manoukian Costume Centre

On 15 October 2015 The Bob and Tamar Manoukian Costume Centre will open on site. The Centre will house more than 20,000 costumes for Royal Opera House productions currently in the repertory, as well as historic costumes, musical instruments and furniture from the archive collection.

In a unique partnership with South Essex College and University of the Arts London, the Royal Opera House has established a new BA (Hons.) degree course in Costume Construction, delivered from the Centre’s bespoke workrooms. The first students started in September 2015.

The Costume Centre is funded through a grant from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in partnership with the Royal Opera House, South Essex College, Thurrock Council, Bob and Tamar Manoukian and Foyle Foundation.

If you want to find out more about the Royal Opera House Thurrock, email or call 01708 891 200.

Public tours

To find out about the work that goes into creating sets and costumes for the Royal Opera House productions, join our Thurrock Tour or experience an Inspiration Day.

Directions to ROH Thurrock

High House Production Park, Vellacott Close (off London Road), Purfleet RM19 1AF

See map of High House Production Park

View Larger Map

By Train:

Purfleet Railway Station is the nearest stop to the Production Park. It is located on the C2C Line, with trains leaving regularly from London Fenchurch Street and Southend Central Train Station.The High House Production Park is a 15-minute walk. Turn left out of the station and walk straight up the London Road, the High House is the large cream house on the left-hand side.

We are working closely with C2C who run the line and manage the station in Purfleet to encourage train travel to our events. Please visit the C2C website for more information.

By Car:

Take the M25 and leave the motorway at Junction 31. Then join the A1090 (Stone House Lane) towards Purfleet railway station. At the roundabout with Purfleet Bypass, continue on the A1090 (London Road) for about 300 yards until you see signposts for the High House site which is on your right.

If  you are travelling by car from London on the A13, take the A1306 towards Purfleet and at the Stonehouse roundabout turn right onto the A1090. At the roundabout with Purfleet Bypass, continue on the A1090 (London Road) for about 300 yards until you see signposts for the High House site which is on your right.

The history of ROH Thurrock

The Bob and Tamar Manoukian Production Workshop opened in December 2010 when the previous Royal Opera House production facility had to be relocated from East London following London’s successful bid to host the 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

A partnership including Arts Council England East, East of England Development Agency, High House Community Group, National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural, Royal Opera House, Thurrock Borough Council and the Thurrock Thames Gateway Development Corporation has worked together since that time to establish a new Production Park for the Creative & Cultural Skills on a 14-acre site in Purfleet, Thurrock.

In December 2010, High House Production Park opened to the public. It is a unique development that seeks to create a cluster of creative and cultural enterprises drawn from the backstage, technical and live music sectors.