46 St. Nicholas Street,
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Architects: Frank Matcham
Firms: Frank Matcham & Company
Styles: Art Nouveau
Previous Names: Hippodrome Cinema
The Hippodrome Theatre was opened 25th October 1905. It had seating in orchestra stalls and a single balcony. There were no boxes. The proscenium was 30 feet wide and the stage 25 feet deep, with five dressing rooms.
It was a variety theatre and around eight years after opening, it became part of the E.H. Bostock chain of variety theatres. Films were screened as part of the variety programme from the early years.
In 1929 it was taken over by the Associated British Cinemas(ABC) chain, and became a full time cinema, although some stage shows were retained in the programming. Later taken over by Regis Entertainments, from September 1955, it was taken over by an independent operator and returned to live theatre use. The Hippodrome Theatre was closed in April 1957.
In 1958, under new owners, the exterior was modernised, and the stalls floor leveled and it became the Savoy Ballroom from June 1959. In the late-1960’s it became a bingo club, operated as a Top Rank Bingo Club and the original Frank Matcham decorations were removed, apart from the ceiling, leaving a rather plain auditorium. Bingo ceased in the early-1980’s.
The building was demolished in 1985, and an office block named Cardinal House was built on the site.
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