The Grand Theatre was situated on the corner of Windsor Terrace and Civic Centre Road. It was built in 1898 but incorporated some 18th century buildings to the east. The Weighbridge, the family home of the Aslatts who in the 19th century owned the coach building premises on the corner of Above Bar and Civic Centre Road, was used as the theatre's dressing rooms. The Grand was a 'legitimate' theatre in that it staged plays by touring companies rather than music hall or variety acts. Sarah Bernhardt and Henry Irving were among the famous thespians to appear there. The Grand was renamed "The New Hippodrome" 25 March 1939, and operated under this name until 14 September 1940. The theatre was used to accommodate troops for the rest of the war. It was refurbished after the war and reopened with its own resident repertory company. It closed down in 1959 and was demolished in 1960. Marlands House now stands on the site.

The Grand Theatre

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Postcard published c.1905

The Grand Theatre

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Poster advertising The Grand, 1926.

Further reading:
Southampton Occasional Notes, by ‘Townsman’, p96-97. (HS/h)
Southampton Occasional Notes 2nd Series, by ‘Townsman’, p71. (HS/h)
Southampton theatres and Music Halls, by Eric Harris. (HS/r)


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