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Brighton Hippodrome top of Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2014

Auditorium of the Brighton Hippodrome, 1988
Auditorium of the Brighton Hippodrome, 1988

The Grade II* former circus theatre, Brighton Hippodrome, tops the thirty-three theatres on The Theatres Trust’s Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2014, launched at the Theatre Royal Brighton on 18th September. The annually published Register features the most ‘at risk’ theatre buildings across the UK under threat of demolition and redevelopment, theatres that lie abandoned, neglected and decaying, and theatres in use at risk of closure.

Brighton & Hove City Council has approved demolition and redevelopment plans for the Grade II* Brighton Hippodrome to create a cinema multiplex and restaurant. Designed by Frank Matcham the theatre is of national significance as one of only three remaining Victorian circus theatres in the UK. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has yet to decide if he will call-in the Planning and Listed Building applications and hold a Planning Inquiry.

Mhora Samuel, Director of The Theatres Trust said, “The Theatre Buildings at Risk Register really raises awareness of the plight of many of our most threatened theatres. It makes people much more aware of the beautiful and much loved theatres that could be lost forever if action is not taken. This year we’ve reduced the number of theatres on the Register to focus on those that need time, resources, and investment if they are to be saved. The big question on the horizon is the extent to which more local authority cuts will lead to further closures. It’s certainly a very worrying trend. The Theatres Trust’s Advisers are working hard to help communities and local authorities find possible solutions.”

Three of the eight new theatres on the Register including the Muni Arts Centre, Pontypridd, Wales, and the Secombe Theatre, Sutton and Charles Cryer Studio Theatre, Carshalton, face closure by their Local Authorities unless a community solution can be found.

Four theatres are considered lost forever and removed from the Register. They include the RAF Brampton Theatre in Cambridgeshire. Although it is to be demolished, a replacement theatre is being planned. And following the welcome news that Theatre Hullabaloo has secured public funding to build a new children’s theatre in Darlington, its former home, Darlington Arts Centre is removed from the Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2014.

For further information and images on each theatre on the Register, contact Kate Carmichael press@theatrestrust.org.uk.

The Theatres Trust Protecting theatres for everyone
T 020 7836 8591

Thursday 18th September 2014


  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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