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Theatres Trust Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2016
Press Information
Tameside Hippodrome, Oldham Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 7SE
Total risk value 8: Risk rating: 3. Star rating: 2. Community rating: 3.
The 1262-seat Tameside Hippodrome is Ashton-under-Lyne’s only Grade II listed, purpose-built
theatre. Its architectural significance illustrates the inter-war fashion of adaption to cinema. It is a rare
survival, retaining a wealth of Art Deco features from the 1930s re-fit, including the coving and
plasterwork detail in the café and ground floor foyer. The original 1904 stage remains, along with its
safety curtain. The four stained glass windows to the first floor have also recently been identified as
being from the 1904 building and are based on a design by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The
Hippodrome is well placed in the town, in an area proposed for regeneration. The theatre is well
equipped and could easily be reopened. With a good business plan it would be viable as a theatre and
live music venue.
Summary of risk: Ownership/Sale (High), Cost of works (Medium), Building fabric (Medium)
The Tameside Hippodrome closed in 2008. A threat of demolition in 2009 was halted by statutory
listing, but the building remains vacant.
Current situation
Tameside Heritage and Arts Trust was set up by local social entrepreneur Keith Dalby-Oldham with the
aim to restore and reopen the Hippodrome. It plans to upgrade and refurbish the theatre to its former
glory, including a new grid and fly tower, and has received very positive support from both Tameside
Metropolitan Borough Council (which owns the building and is keen to see it re-open as a live theatre)
and the general public. This is a good example of strong community leadership working with a local
authority to bring a theatre back to life. The Hippodrome Limited (THL), a Community Interest Company
set up by Tameside Heritage and Arts Trust, registered its interest and is currently negotiating with the
Council to lease the theatre and run the building.
In 2015 THL undertook a survey of the building which highlighted concerns about its continuing
deterioration, particularly the roof. In late 2015 the group was successful in applying for the BRICK
mentoring programme from The Prince’s Regeneration Trust.
THL is currently in negotiations with potential funders for grants to carry out urgent repair works and also
to employ an architectural team to look at proposals for a reopened Hippodrome. THL is also in
discussions with the Architectural Heritage Fund with regards to its Project Development Grant for
funding a full time post for fundraising, and is in the process of launching a new campaign targeting local
To secure the re-opening and long-term sustainable operation of Tameside Hippodrome.
Action 2016/17 for Theatres Trust
To work with and advise The Hippodrome Limited to help secure the leasehold of the building.
© Theatres Trust
Theatres Trust Theatre Buildings at Risk Register 2016
Press Information
Further Information
Current Freehold Owner: Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council
Local Contact: Keith Dalby-Oldham, The Hippodrome Limited T: 07946 555008
E: [email protected]
Local Authority: Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council W: T: 01613 424 460
Theatres Trust Theatres Database: ID Number 1055
Theatre at Risk Video:
Theatres Trust Contact: Kate Carmichael E: [email protected] T: 020 7836 8591
© Theatres Trust