Hippodrome Circus, Great Yarmouth

Postcard of The Hippodrome, Great Yarmouth

By Laura Matthews

George Gilbert, a circus promoter from Norwich, opened a Circus building on the site of the Bath House stables in 1989.  It proved so successful that he built the present Hippodrome building, which opened in 1903.

The Hippodrome gets its name from the Latin for horse (hippo).

The building to the left of the Hippodrome, on the corner of St Peters Rd, was once used as stables to house the animals used in the performances.  With the removal of animals from the shows of late, it now contains shops.

One of the highlights of the shows was a water spectacle, where the ring was flooded and the aquatic animals of the shows would join the human swimmers to finish the shows in style, with a 'dancing fountain' (hand-pumped from the wings) as its centrepiece.

The horses of the building's name have come and gone, along with the rest of the animals, but the Circus is still going strong, as is the water spectacle, revived after some decades of disuse.

Photo:The Hippodrome, Great Yarmouth

The Hippodrome, Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Museums

This page was added by Laura Matthews on 20/06/2007.

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