Ready Steady Cook star Ainsley Harriott and MP Jane Ellison were just two of the guests at Battersea Arts Centre (BAC) this morning when it was announced Wandsworth Museum is moving in.

From March this year, Wandsworth Museum will share BAC’s home in the Grade II* listed former town hall in Lavender Hill.

The news also coincides with the final phase of the centre’s £13.3m restoration project.

Guests were shown around the redesigned centre and given a glimpse of what is on offer.

Ainsley Harriot, who grew up in Wandsworth and still lives in the borough, said BAC was important both in the community and nationally.

The former Wandsworth Boys School pupil said: "I'm very encouraged by it. I think they have got their finger on the pulse.

"We nearly lost it a few years ago, now the council has been fantastic saying ‘you get on with your own thing’.

"It also encourages the youth and the local community. It is a fantastic place for the community. You just have to walk downstairs to see the space for the kids.

"I like the enthusiasm, passion and energy that comes out of these doors."

The famous chef also told us he likes to buy his cooking spices in the shops around Tooting

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Battersea MP Jane Ellison said: "It is very exciting. BAC has embraced this building as one of its sources of inspiration and brought such imagination to it. They use all parts of the building - it is really fascinating to watch.

"Lots of people would see a listed building, with its nooks and crannies, and see a problem, but they've seen the building as a set of endless possibilities."

BAC announced a partnership with the Guardian newspaper, focusing on arts organisations and artists all over the country.

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They also revealed a partnership with Queen Mary University London, to develop the “university of creativity”, based in the centre’s new learning hub.

David Jubb, artistic director and CEO of BAC, said: “The possibilities for a new partnership with Wandsworth Museum are enticing and boundless, together we will be inspired by the past to help shape a better future.”

Wandsworth Museum is currently housed in West Hill. The move will mean storytellers, musicians and theatre-makers can work alongside heritage experts.

A full programme is expected to be unveiled later this year. 

Sue Walker, director of Wandsworth Museum, said: “In partnership, we can reach more people than we could do separately; engage them in our historical collections in unexpected and imaginative ways."