Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Hulme Hippodrome, Manchester


A permission visit of sorts as the building is currently occupied by squatters:


The Hulme Hippodrome, originally known as the Grand Junction Theatre and Floral Hall, opened in Preston Street, Hulme, Manchester, on 7 October 1901. It and the nearby Playhouse Theatre in Warwick Street, built at the same time, were part of the theatrical empire of W. H. Broadhead. The two venues were connected by an arcade, at the centre of which was Broadhead's company headquarters. The architect was J.J. Alley. Initially the theatre staged mainly dramatic productions, while the Playhouse presented variety performances, but in 1905 the names and functions of the theatres were interchanged: the Hippodrome became the Grand Junction, and the variety performances were transferred to the new Hippodrome.

The Hippodrome was last used as a theatre in the 1960s; from the mid-1970s until its closure in 1988 it was used as a bingo hall. Since then most of the building has remained empty, and it has been placed on Manchester City Council's Buildings at Risk Register.

The building was bought by Gilbert Deya Ministries in 1999, and services were held in part of the ground floor. The church spent £200,000 on the building and in 2013 leased it a charity, Youth Village, they then decided to sell the building.

The Friends of Hulme Hippodrome had hoped to get the building listed as an asset of community value which would have given the community group six months to raise the money needed to buy the building from the owner before it went out to general market. The application, however, was turned down by Manchester City Council, a council spokesman said: "There would also be a significant cost to bring the building back into use - into the millions - and without a [business] plan in place it would be unfair for us to assume they could turn the building around."

The building was due to be auctioned 18 May 2017 at the Macron Stadium, Bolton, with a guide price of £300,000.


Esoteric Eric

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