History of the London Hippodrome Casino

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18th July 2023
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History of the London Hippodrome Casino

In 1900 the London Casino Hippodrome was built by Mr F Matcham for Mr E Moss for the then huge sum of £250,000. Initially it was used principally as a circus show. Performing art shows including elephants, dolphins and polar bears with devil dearing acrobatic shows were common place and this Hippodrome Circus was opened on the 15th January 1900. Included in the building was a 100,000 gallon water tank, which was the showpeice spectacle for the circus performing animals.

Hippodrome – The Meaning

The word “Hippodrome” comes from the decription that Greeks used to give for stadium’s used for horse racing and chariot racing.

Today, some horse racing tracks are also called hippodromes, the Central Moscow Hippodrome being one such track.

The Greek Hippodrome consisted of ten or more chariots runniing simulateously around a track being around 210 meters long and appoximately 120m in width.

Hippodrome – Talk of the Town

In 1958, there was a major refurbishment and the London Hippodrome was converted into a cabaret restaurant with the name, “Talk of the Town”. All the famous artists of the time performed at the Hippodrome including Englebert Humperdink, Val Doonican, Dusty Springfield, Tom Jones,Judy Garland, Eartha Kitt,Shirley Bassey and The Temptations Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr, Stevie Wonder, Sacha Distel, Matt Monro, Cliff Richard, and Lulu.

However this style of entertainment at the London Hippodrome Theatre eventually became less popular, unfortuantely causing the event to be closed down at the end of 1982.

Hippodrome – Peter StingFellow’s Nightclub Covent Garden/Angel

Mr Peter Stringfellow undertook a huge refurbishment in 1983 of the building, turning it into a nightclub and restuarant which became popular with young tourists and city professionals. However, new owners came in and trasformed the venue into the “Cirque at the Hippodrome”.

Cirque at the Hippodrome won BEDA award for best UK nightclub in 2004, but was forced to close down in October 2005 when it lost its drinks license due to problematic drinking in the area.

Hippodrome Nightclub Kingston

The previously known Works Nightclub was closed and the venue is was then known as the ‘Hippodrome’ nightclub in Kingston, Surrey, England, which has now also been subesquently closed!

Hippodrome Casino – Gorden Ramsey Restuarant

There are plans to restore Mr F Matcham’s original design prints for the casino, and will also feature Mr Gorden Ramsey’s 15th Restuarant within London. Will the Hippodrome Casino be restored to its former glory?

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