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Cornes & Son, 'Builders of the New Theatre Royal'

Theatre Royal, Hanley
Originally the Royal Pottery Theatre, established about 1841 and destroyed by fire on June 2nd 1949.
Grand Re-Opening on Tuesday, August 14th, 1951

Cornes & Son, 'Builders of the New Theatre Royal'
Cornes & Son, 'Builders of the New Theatre Royal'


from the programme for the re-opening, first night - August 14th 1951

"Dear Ladies and Gentlemen

After the catastrophe of 2nd June, 1949, it was a duly to the people of the Potteries and North Staffordshire that the Theatre should be rebuilt. The decision was made and steps were taken immediately to put it into effect and the new Theatre Royal is the result.

Many difficulties arose but all trials, disappointments and delays have been surmounted and it is hoped that our Patrons are pleased and will regard this Theatre as worthy of the City and District.
The Potteries association with the Decorative Arts and with Music is a matter of history. 

The old Theatre itself was honoured by the notable Artistes of the times but the new Theatre offers facilities both of structure and capacity which should attract the very best Companies and Actors.
Among the many improvements which our progressive age has made possible is the new Electronic Switchboard. The facility with which this can be handled, combined with the complete elimination of the danger of overloading, ensures a high margin of safety in its operation and the maximum amount of efficiency in Stage Lighting, The new battery operated emergency secondary lighting system also contributes towards the safety of the public by ensuring an adequate standard of illumination in the event of a failure in power supply.

The Dressing Room accommodation is second to none in the Country and the largest Companies will be adequately provided for in this respect. Shower baths, a laundry, ironing room and a large, well equipped wardrobe room will contribute to the general welfare of our Artiste visitors. A high speed lift serves all dressing room floors and the provision of a snack bar is a further amenity.
The Stage gear is of the most modern counterweighted kind and facilitates the smooth and noiseless removal of scenes in the shortest possible space of time.

The ample seating space in the Auditorium gives a complete and uninterrupted view of the Stage from all parts of the house. Wider gangways and seat spacing gives greater comfort, and the latest and most modern air conditioning equipment ensures a controlled degree of temperature in all weathers.

Five fully licensed refreshment bars -one at each floor level and one on the Second Circle stairs will add to the atmosphere, which an evening at the Theatre engenders, and a tastefully furnished Snack Bar adjoining the Mezzanine Bar will provide teas and light refreshments.
Spacious cloak rooms are situated on the ground floor and at the entrance to the Mezzanine Bar. The Mezzanine Bar, one of the largest in North Staffordshire, has access from the rear of the Stalls and from the Circle Stairs.

A public telephone kiosk will be provided in the Stalls entrance passage.
It will be the earnest endeavour of the Directors to maintain the high standards embarked upon both in the amenities of the Theatre and the quality of the entertainment.

The Directors place on record their appreciation of the efforts of all who have helped to make the re-opening of this Theatre possible, including the Ladies and Gentlemen who spontaneously formed the Committee for the Petition for the re-building and the large number who assisted in producing the Petition."

Yours sincerely,

Frederick Peake

Chairman and Managing Director.
The Potteries Theatres Ltd.



contents: 2011 adverts




Related Pages..

Theatre Royal - in 1840, a Methodist chapel in Brunswick Street, Hanley - which was originally built as a colliery winding house - ceased to be used as a place of worship. It was converted to a lecture hall by Thomas Hinde, renamed "The People's Theatre", and began to put on public entertainment. 


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Photo of the Week
Potworks of the Week