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The Bedminster Hippodrome, East Street, Bristol

Later - The Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema / The Stoll Picture Theatre

Bristol Index

A Postcard showing the former Stoll Picture Theatre (Bedminster Hippodrome).

Above - A Postcard showing the former Stoll Picture Theatre (Bedminster Hippodrome).

An Advertisement for the Grand Opening of the Bedminster Hippodrome - From the Bristol Times and Mirror, Tuesday the 8th of August 1911.The Bedminster Hippodrome Theatre was situated on East Street, Bristol and was designed for Walter De Frece by the well known Theatre Architect Bertie Crewe, with Decorations and Furnishings by A. R. Dean Ltd., of Birmingham. The Theatre opened on Monday the 5th of August 1911.

Right - An Advertisement for the Grand Opening of the Bedminster Hippodrome - From the Bristol Times and Mirror, Tuesday the 8th of August 1911.

The Stage Newspaper reported on the new Theatre in their 3rd of August 1911 edition saying:- 'The Variety Theatres Controlling Company's new hall, the Bedminster Hippodrome, Bristol, will open on Monday. The house has an imposing frontage in East Street, executed in a modern Renaissance of local red-brick and white Carrara.

The interior is decorated in white and gold with a sparing use of a delicate cream colour. The ceiling is painted in a scheme of colour with a design of figures on a celestial blue background The best parts of the house are freely carpeted, and the seats are arm-chairs of velvet plush.

The arrangement of the house is on the two-tier cantilever system, with a large stall area and pit. The width of the house is 70 ft. and the depth 80 ft. in the auditorium while the building will accommodate about 3,000 people in pit, stalls, circle, gallery, and six private boxes. From every seat an excellent view of the stage is obtainable.

The entrance hall is neatly laid in mosaic, and decorated in keeping with the interior of the house. Mosaic slips lead to the foyer, whence the best parts of the house are reached. The foyer is a spacious apartment, tastefully furnished with palms, etc., to give it a finishing touch.

The stage is 80 ft. wide, 42 ft. deep, and 45 ft. to the under side of the grid. The equipment of the stage and all the appliances are on a most up-to-date plan. The heating and ventilation of the building and also the lighting, have all been planned on the moat generous scale. The orchestra will consist of seventeen musicians.

Ample cloakroom and saloon accommodation have been provided, and a special room is devoted to the St. John's Ambulance, which will have a staff on duty at every performance. Elaborate provision has been made against fire, and there are numerous hydrants all over the house, also in the flies and on the stage. The dressing rooms at the back of the stage are well appointed and easily accessible.

The managing director is Mr. Walter De Frece, and Mr. A. J. Carter is the resident manager. The Great Lafayette was to have headed the bill at the opening performances on Monday, but that position will now be occupied. by Horace Goldin. The hall will be run on two houses a night principle. To-day (Thursday) there will be a formal opening of the hall by the Lord Mayor of Bristol, who will be accompanied by the Lady Mayoress, and invitations to the reception have also been sent to the Sheriff, Sir E. B. James, the aldermen and councillors and other prominent citizens. The architect of the new hall is Mr. Bertie Crewe.

The above text in quotes was first published in the Stage Newspaper, 3rd of August 1911.

An Advertisement for the opening of the Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema - From the Western Daily Press of April 12th 1915.The Bedminster Hippodrome had first opened on Monday the 5th of August 1911, but just a few years later it was converted for Cinema use and reopened as the Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema on Monday the 12th of April 1915.

Righjt - An Advertisement for the opening of the Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema - From the Western Daily Press of April 12th 1915.

The Western Daily Press reported on the changes in their 7th of April 1915 edition saying:- 'After being 'redecorated and refurnished the Bedminster Hippodrome is to be reopened on Monday as a first-class cinema. The hall has become associated with the St. Augustine's Parade Hippodrome, and Mr Oswald Stoll is chairman and managing director.

It is claimed for the Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema that it will be one of the handsomest and most commodius cinema theatres in the British Isles, and those who remember the hall as a variety theatre will he inclined to endorse this statement. The finest pictures of the world's greatest film producers may be expected, and the picture programme will be interspersed with pictorial recitals by high-class vocalists.

Another important and distinctive feature will be a fine orchestral organ, which has been specially built for the Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema. The prices of admission will range from 3d to 1s, and afternoon tea will be served free to all parts from four o'clock to half past six, the performance, by the-bye, being continuous from three o'clock till half-past ten. There will be a complete change of programme every Monday and Thursday. Mr F. Sumpter, a gentlemen well-known in Bristol through his long connection with the Zetland Picture House has been appointed acting manager, while the name of Mr J. Christie, of the Bristol Hippodrome, appears as manager..

The above text in quotes was first published in the Western Daily Press, 7th of April 1915.

The Bedminster Hippodrome Cinema was later renamed the Stoll Picture Theatre but sadly it was bombed in the blitz during the Second World War on the 3rd of January 1941, which destroyed the Theatre's roof and seriously damaged the Auditorium. Unfortunately the Theatre was never reopened and was eventually demolished.

If you have any more information or images for this Theatre that you are willing to share please Contact me.

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