Facelift for Hippodrome is a non-starter
SOME time ago I wrote a letter about the Derby Hippodrome Theatre and I’m afraid the viability of it continues to pass me by.
January will see the 50th anniversary of my arrival in Derby. In that time this building has always been a sad and run-down white elephant. Why?
It was outmoded soon after it was built. It is not suitable for much of today’s entertainment, it’s in the wrong place, in the most rundown area of the city, with atrocious access, and no close parking.
The 1930s Art Deco style and tiles on the exterior are wonderful, but the level of destruction inside, and the lack of a roof, means the building would need to be rebuilt. Refurbishment is cloud-cuckoo thinking.
The estimates for the refurbishment of the Assembly Rooms makes you wonder how much a revamp of the Hippodrome would cost.
The letters supporting the Hippodrome with ideas on how to pay for a rebuild never suggest a method of upkeep and funding. And, as Derby struggles to keep a profitable theatre afloat, another velodrome or venue needing huge subsidies is something we can’t afford.
Chris Eddison, Mickleover