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Dedicated to Arthur Lloyd, 1839 - 1904.

 

The Empire Theatre, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire

Mansfield Theatres Index

The Mansfield Empire Theatre was built in 1914 by W. Willoughby. Almost opposite the Hippodrome Theatre, Mansfield was the Empire of 1914, again in use as an independent second release cinema. I was not allowed to inspect this building, however, it's greatest claim to fame would seem to be that Flanagan and Allen made their first appearance as a team here in 1926 in Florrie Ford's revue; "Flo & Co." Chesney Allen was in the show and was the company manager. Both men had come into contact in the army during the Great war; both had been on the stage before the war, Bud Flanagan, among other things as the Harlem of an act called Harlem and Bronx. Chesney Allen had been the juvenile lead in the Percy Lodge Stock company which hailed from the North East of England. Early in the Great war they seemed to be touring the West Country Albany Ward circuit to theatres with; "The Coastguards Daughter." The swan song of the Percy Lodge company seemed to been an engagement at the Theatre Royal Winchester in September 1915. Chesney played the part of a young Naval Officer wrong accused of deflowering the Coastguards daughter. In the Court Martial scene which preceded the interval, Chesney, found guilty, fell to his knees proclaiming; "What is to become of me now ?"; there was always some wag on hand to shout out; "Why not join the Army mate" and it would appear that Chesney done just that. - Courtesy Alan Chudley.

The Theatre was demolished in 1973.

For more on Mansfield's Theatres by Alan Chudley click here.

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

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