Contracts are signed for restoration work on Dublin's Olympia Theatre to begin.

Following a structural collapse, the Olympia Theatre on Dame Street in Dublin has been closed since 5 November 1974. On this day a girder collapsed onto the stage during a lunchtime break in rehearsals for 'West Side Story'. The proscenium arch across the orchestra pit fell-in damaging ornate plaster work. Ventilation shafts in the ceiling fell onto the stalls and the theatre’s ornate boxes were shattered.

Hard to imagine how this pile of pathetic rubble can be restored to its former glory.

Since the damage occurred, a campaign to restore the Olympia Theatre has grown in strength leading to the signing of contracts for a seven month restoration project to get underway.

Among those attending the contract signing ceremony are Chairman of Olympia Productions Limited Brendan Smith, architect Michael Scott, Lord Mayor of Dublin Patrick Dunne and comedian and actor Jack Cruise.

It is estimated the repair work will cost £235,000 and it is to be financed by Dublin Corporation and Olympia Productions Limited.

Along with Brendan Smith, actor and comedian Cecil Sheridan and politician Ruairí Quinn have each played an integral role in the two year battle to reopen the Olympia.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 31 May 1976. The reporter is Derek Davis.