A splendid music hall with a spectacular auditorium featuring a riot of gilded Rococo plasterwork. An iconic building of social, historical and architectural significance, currently in a very poor state of repair.
- Preston Street, Hulme, Manchester, M15 5EU
- Risk Rating
- 8 (risk rating: 3. star rating: 3. community rating: 2.)
- Local Authority
- Manchester City Council
- Gilbert Deya Ministries
- Gilbert Deya Ministries (operates from the foyer only)
- J J Alley
- Date of Construction
- Grade II
- Estimated at 2,000
- Database Link
- View in Theatres Database
Hulme Hippodrome is a splendid Grade II music hall. The magnificent auditorium, which has two galleries and a proscenium arch in their original state, is a spectacular riot of gilded Rococo plasterwork. The basic design is very like the auditorium of the Hulme Playhouse next door, but apart from this (and other now demolished theatres designed by J J Alley for the Broadhead Circuit), the concept is quite unlike any contemporary theatre or music hall. The area surrounding the theatre has been substantially redeveloped in the last 20 years and the theatre could find a use as part of the local community. It is an iconic building of social, historical and architectural significance.
Why is this theatre at risk?
Hulme Hippodrome was last used for theatre in the 1960s, then bingo from the mid-1970s until its closure in 1986. The Floral Hall adjacent to the main theatre was then used as a snooker hall. In 2003 evangelist group Gilbert Deya Ministries purchased the building. It operates from the foyer only, leaving the auditorium vacant and in a very poor state of repair. With no user for the auditorium, the theatre remains very vulnerable. Attempts by the council to make the owner undertake repair works have been unsuccessful.
In spring 2016 a group named the Friends of Hulme Hippodrome applied to get the building listed as an Asset of Community Value. Unfortunately this was rejected by the Council. In the meantime, rumours abound regarding the possible sale of the building for redevelopment.
Image: Hulme Hippodrome, Ian Grundy