Possibly the most famous theatre in the world, it is the only theatre from the early 19th century still in business. It was severely damaged by bombs in World War II. The building was reopend in December 1950 by King George V, Queen Elizabeth (the late Queen Mother) and Princess Margaret.
£2.5 million were spent in the early 1960s to renovated the Old Vic. The facade is now an interpretation of an engraving of 1830 and the auditorium is true to the 1871 designs. It was refurbished in 1983.
When the building was put up for sale in 1997, potential bidders proposed turning it into a bingo hall, a shopping mall, and even a strip club. At the last minute, the Old Vic Theatre Trust was established which ensured the dramatic future of the venue.