The Theatres Trust

Borough (Wallsend)

  • Theatre ID
  • Built / Converted
  • Dates of use
    • 1909 - 1960
  • Current state
  • Current use
    Demolished (cinema 1946-60; bingo; then amusement arcade and recording studio; closed 2005; demolished 2011)
  • Address
    High Street East, Wallsend, Tyne & Wear, NE28, England


The Borough Theatre in Wallsend was demolished in March 2011. The following is the description of the building that appeared in 2000 in the book 'The Theatres Trust Guide to British Theatres 1750-1950': Good auditorium, completely intact but at present with a suspended ceiling cutting off the upper balcony. The two balconies, of about eight rows each and slightly curved, come well forward toward the stage and end in a single semi-circular box on each side. The lower boxes have plaster canopies supported by slender Ionic columns. Between the boxes and the stage, on either side, are two levels of niches holding female figures, all contained within a giant enriched Ionic order standing on pedestals at stalls level. The lower balcony front is decorated with heavy, paired consoles forming panels filled with cartouches. Oval ceiling with central gas burner. Apart from alterations to the entrance the exterior is also intact but of little merit. The main front is slightly concave with brick walls and plain, painted stone pilasters with crudely detailed tops. Stage 9.14m (30ft) deep. The building is in good condition and could be restored to use relatively easily.

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Decorative wall panel on the ante-proscenium, Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

Auditorium from the stage (as bingo), Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

Streetscape with Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

Box at the stage left end of the circle, Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

Auditorium stage left from circle level, Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

Façade of the Borough Theatre, Wallsend, 1994
© Ian Grundy

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  • Other names
    Gaumont, Borough Theatre & Hippodrome
  • Events
    • 1909 - 1960 Use:
    • 1909 Owner/Management: Joseph Duffy, owner
    • 1909 Design/Construction:
      • Wilkins & Son (Liverpool) - Consultant: Plasterwork And Decoration
    • 1909 Design/Construction:
      • J Fleming Davidson & C D James - Architect
    • 1911 Alteration: operating box at rear of circle installed
      • J F Davidson - Architect
    • 1911 Owner/Management: Hugh Duffy, owner; Black Bros, proprietor
    • 1919 Alteration: operating box altered
      • Dixon & Stienlet - Architect
    • 1928 - 1960 Owner/Management: Denman Picture Houses/Gaumont/ CMA/Rank, lessees, owners from 1939
    • 1934 - 1938 Owner/Management: George Bernard, owner
    • 1935 Alteration: operating box altered
      • James L Ross - Architect
    • 1949 Alteration: theatre renovated and altered
      • Percy L Browne & Harding - Architect
    • 2011 Demolition:
  • Capacities
    • Original: 1336
    • Later: 1939: 1157 1956: 1619
    • Current: est. 1100
  • Listings
    • Grade Not listed
  • Stage type
    • Proscenium raked
  • Dimensions
    • Building dimensions: Frontage 105ft 5in
    • Stage dimensions: Depth: 30ft
    • Proscenium width: 30ft
    • Height to grid: 56ft

Of the period

Façade of the Princes (later Shaftesbury) Theatre
Shaftesbury Theatre

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Raked seating in the Walker Theatre, Theatre Severn, April 2011.
Theatre Severn

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