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The Grand Music Hall


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Sheffield History

THE GRAND MUSIC HALL

LOCATION

Scotland Street/West Bar area

INFORMATION

The Grand Music Hall on West Bar was the last standing music hall in Sheffield (although in a state of disrepair as you can imagine)

It had been forced to close after the Moss Empire Palace had opened in Sheffield. An entrepreneur from Northampton, Frank MacNaughten, took it over and emplyed Fred Baugh as house manager and Sidney Arthur as booker.

MacNaughten re-opened the 'Grand Theatre and Music Hall' as he billed the place, at Bank Holiday, 1896, on the then almost unknown 'Two Houses a Night' system.

PICTURES

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Sheffield History

Have hit a total brick wall with this one - drove down there and there's no sign of the place ever existing. In fact I can't even figure out where it would have stood.

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I always thought there were two. One was on the block just around the corner of Shalesmoor past the Fire museum. You used be able to see features of it from the top on an 82 bus.

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Sheffield History

aha..

At the moment there's a single building - with a car lot on the right as you look at it.

The car lot goes round the back of the building and ends up to the left side of the building too so it totally surrounds it

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Amazing.. I've never seen the place and your picture is most appreciated.

What an interesting place - I wish I'd been with Rony Robinson when he toured it on Radio Sheffield just before it was demolished.

Would have been an amazing place for pictures

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Guest tsavo

The Old Grand Theatre stood at the corner of West Bar and Spring Street.

This photo dates from the 1930s.

Wasn't there another one on Gibralter St? I seem to remember being able to see traces of it from the top of the bus. Part of the pros arch or something. Brilliant pic, by the way. So much has disappeared even in my lifetime.

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  • 2 weeks later...
GrinderBloke

I remember listening to BBC Radio Sheffield about 15 years ago and they did a live broadcast from this place during a weekday morning show.

I recall it being the last music hall still standing in Sheffield and it was somewhere near the old fire station, the building sounded in a bad way... pigeons being the only residents, roof in a very bad state etc.

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I thought initially it was next to the fire museum where the car lot is now (opposite the big building that the 7 spices restaurant is in)

But JR has kindly pointed out that it was actually across the road from that on the other side of the big building

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Something tells me that The Grand was altered and used by the Ecclesfield firm of William Green & Co as their showroom. They made cookers and heating appliances. Am I right, or am I mixing The Grand with another West Bar theatre?

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Guest tsavo

Grand Theatre, West Bar. - www.picturesheffield.com

The building was originally The New Star Music Hall, but was partially rebuilt and opened as The Grand Theatre in 1887 with some additional changes in 1893. In 1896, Frank McNaghten took over the theatre and introduced a new format with twice nightly variety programmes. Although the potential of the hall was limited, it enabled McNaghten to expand his enterprises and by 1910 he owned three theatres, seventeen music halls and two cinemas, all controlled from his Sheffield office.

The first "animated pictures" were shown at the Grand, as a novelty, during the variety show interlude in 1886.They came to shown on a more regular basis and by the end of 1908 the hall was mainly being used for film performances. At this time it was ranked as Sheffield's third cinema after The Central Hall, Norfolk St. (see under Tivoli) and The Theatre Royal, Attercliffe. (see under The Regal, Staniforth Rd.)

The Grand was closed in 1920 with the intention to demolish it and build a "superKinema" but this proved impossible as it would involve demolishing several cottages at a time of a great housing shortage. The local authority refused to allow the premises to be used for film or variety performances although trade film shows were permitted but these ceased in 1924.

It was then used as a public house but by the mid 1930s was semi derelict and the rebuilding scheme was finally abandoned in 1938, when the local authority purchased the site and demolished the building.

Info: Sheffield Cinemas.

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ukelele lady

Does anyone know if there is any information available on the acts and artists

of the Sheffield theatres and music halls?

One of my ancesters used to sing in the west bar area music halls and her

father who was a magician and illusionist also kept the Blue Pig on Workhouse

Lane. [Heaven knows what he did while he was serving the drinks]

Another female family member used to clog dance at the Roscoe before it was

a cinema.

Here's a picture of one of them, although I don't know if she used a stage name.

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