The Hippodrome has been dubbed one of the seven wonders of the British seaside. The Historic Hippodrome is Britain’s only surviving total circus building, built in 1903 by the legendary circus showman George Gilbert. Throughout the century the intimate arena has played host to an incredible variety of entertainment, from amazing water spectacles and stage shows to cinema and cine variety and even wartime use as a military practice shooting range! – Apart from always presenting the very best in circus, Lloyd George held political rallies here – Lillie Langtry sang, Little Tich clowned, Max Miller joked, Houdini escaped, the world’s finest clowns and circus personalities performed –
ALL experienced the Hippodrome’s unique atmosphere. It’s likely that even Charlie Chaplin performed here as a child actor before finding fame in America.
In recent years the Hippodrome has played host to The Berlin Symphony Orchestra, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Julian Lloyd Webber and The Russian Philharmonic, Moscow State Circus, Chinese State Circus, Circus of Horrors, BBC Question Time, the film setting for the feature film Malice in Wonderland, The Kooks and the legendary Duane Eddy, Billy Bragg and even Shakespeare!
Peter Jay restored the water spectacle for his first produced circus show in 1981, having bought the building in 1979, the water has been a major part of our unique show ever since.
St. Georges Road,