OLD THEATRES magazine --- Edition 3 IS NOW AVAILABLE AS A RE-PRINT. STILL WONDERFUL VALUE at just £8.00 (includes UK postage and packing)
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Edition 3 of OLD THEATRES magazine turned the spotlight on to the restoration of Portsmouth New Theatre Royal (shown on our cover) with extra excellent colour and black and white pictures, together with a fascinating in-depth article on its history. Another colour spread detailed work to upgrade the historic Theatre Royal at Newcastle on Tyne, whilst for the centre colour spread we visited the Grand Theatre, Blackpool, to marvel at its ornate interior. We also revealed how Winchester Theatre Royal was converted from a hotel and is now believed to be the last of Britain’s cine-variety theatres, saved from demolition by an action group!
This most interesting building started its life in 1850 as the Market Hotel, but was converted into a new place of entertainment for the town featuring music hall acts and spectacular silent movies. Famous stars who have since ‘trod its boards’ include Dame Judi Dench, Sir John Mortimer, Alan Titchmarsh, Clive James, John Sargeant and Colin Firth.
Chairman of the magazine, Terry Kirtland, said it was a real joy to discover information and old pictures of theatres which had never seen the light of day --probably for decades.
There was also sadness, as we revealed the condition of our latest ‘Sleeping Beauty’, Swansea Palace Theatre which ended its life with some strange uses. And there was to be a final irony for Nelson Palace Theatre at the conclusion of its bingo days.
Attention was also drawn to the continuing plight of the Theatre Royal, Hyde, while details were given of the statue of Euterpe, the Muse of living poetry, which went missing from the Hackney Empire in the 1960s, and the preservation of her counterpart at Nuneaton. Plans and a final photograph were also shown of a music hall at Birmingham, scheduled to be demolished for a re-development re-development scheme
On a lighter note we featured the career of Britain’s famous bird whistler of the halls, Ronnie Ronalde, whose long career treading the boards spans over 70 years. Our history pages began with a moving tale by David Aspinall about his memories of Blackburn Palace, a typical and much lamented northern theatre. Most editions feature a ‘sleeping beauty’, but will they come back to life ?
Our Editor, Ted Bottle detailed the role of safety curtains in theatres, and we discovered the identity of a ‘lost’ theatre at Bognor Regis, and several more, too!
More wonderful pictures came to light from Norwich Hippodrome, and full details were given of the Theatres Trust 2009 Register of Theatres ‘At Risk’; while the son of a famous lady of the stage revealed her story.
In this packed edition, theatrical moments brought a variety of detail about theatres throughout the country, with an interesting development for supporters of Doncaster Grand Theatre, and an excellent development planned for Morecambe Winter Gardens Theatre, and from Dolgellau, we reported on a tiny theatre with its loyal band of enthusiasts. More articles from readers and some very busy letters’ pages, made this edition of the magazine a particular favourite by everybody who loves OLD THEATRES.)
Beautifully presented, and highly regarded by everyone in the theatrical profession, the magazine continued to highlight the work of the Frank Matcham Society and particularly its blue plaque unveilings at Matcham theatres. Two of its most popular features have always been its ‘Glimpses from the Past’ and its ‘Points from the Post’ column
If you are interested in what we are doing, we would be delighted to hear from you---as a theatre devotee like ourselves, or as a member of a theatrical group performing on stage or supporting your local theatre as a member of the audience.
We’ll be delighted to arrange for a copy of the magazine to be posted off to you. please send us your address details along with a cheque for £8 (which includes UK postage). *Copies are also posted overseas after we have advised you on the postage costs.
Your cheque should be made payable to:
T.G. Kirtland, 20, Rife Way, Felpham,
BOGNOR REGIS, West Sussex, PO22 7BW
Theatre managements should give details of their
Marketing Manager/Director along with E Mail details.
We will be delighted to add reciprocal ‘links’ to our Web Pages.
Just send us an E Mail and JOIN IN !
All of us at OLD THEATRES magazine sent our warmest wishes to you, and look forward to hearing from you in support, so that Britain’s wonderful halls of entertainment can go forward to serve future generations.