The Winter Gardens, Church Street, Blackpool, Lancashire

The Winter Gardens, Church Street, Blackpool, Lancashire
Photograph taken 17 September 1999 © Mr G M Smith ARPS. Source Historic England Archive ref: 183662

The Winter Gardens, together with the Tower and its attendant buildings, established Blackpool as the premier seaside resort in England. It is a vast entertainment complex containing a number of individual elements built round a pre-existing house over a long period between 1875 and 1939. The first part of the complex was built between 1875 and 1878 by Thomas Mitchell of Oldham. This included an outdoor skating rink and the Flora Hall. The Pavilion Theatre was built in 1878 as a glass-domed winter garden, giving the complex its name. In 1982, the stalls slope was removed and the theatre converted for multiple use and as a conference hall. The Empress Ballroom was built in 1896 by Magnall and Littlewood of Manchester. The first Opera House was built in 1889 by Frank Matcham but it was rebuilt in 1911 by Magnall and Littlewood. This theatre burned down in 1938 but its white faience facade and foyer still survive. A new theatre was built in 1939 by Charles MacKeith in a 1930s geometric cine-design. In 1931 the Galleon Bar, Baronial Hall and Spanish Hall were built by J C Derham and lavishly decorated in plaster by Andrew Mazzei, Art Director of the Gaumont Film Company.

Location

Lancashire Blackpool

Period

Victorian (1837 - 1901)

Tags

entertainment leisure theatre seaside Victorian (1837 - 1901)