Darlington Hippodrome has an archive of over 50,000 items relating to the history of the Hippodrome, Darlington and theatre. The archive features programmes, play-bills, posters and photographs relating to the shows staged at the theatre from 1907 to date. It also features a large collection focussing on the building itself including plans, photographs and sketches from past and recent restorations.
The archive has been developed as part of the 2016 Heritage Fund Grant, alongside the restoration of the Hippodrome. The theatre has been able to develop this archive with the assistance of volunteers from Darlington Culture Volunteers; 40 volunteers have dedicated 2,022 hours over the last 4 years, to recording, cataloguing, scanning and packing the collection. With the volunteers support a significant portion of the collection has been digitised and catalogued. To find out more about joining the volunteers, visit their website. Currently there are three production databases available to the public – 1907-1969, Darlington Operatic Society and Pantomime. Each database features information about the different shows with cast, crew and production company details
The archive is currently stored across two sites, Darlington Hippodrome and Crown Street Library; if you would like to see anything in the archive please contact Cait Barratt, the Heritage Learning and Engagement Officer Caitlin.Barratt@Darlington.gov.uk
Database of productions
These databases are chronological lists of every single performance that has ever been staged at Darlington Hippodrome over the last 112 years. There are currently three databases available:
- Database of productions, 1907-1969
- Complete list of Pantomime Productions, 1907- Present
- Complete list of Darlington Operatic Society productions, 1928-Present
Over the last two years these databases have been developed by using a variety of sources including programmes, publicity copy, newspaper articles, posters, records of income / expenditure and the managing director’s notebooks.
USING THE DATABASES
All the current databases are available for download as a PDF, and using the PDF search tool, users can search for a specific, production, date or actor.
In addition to providing production information, the database also indicates what material is available in the archive, marked as “Y”.
|Darlington Operatic Society Production|
|Links to the Railway|
This key is used in the General Production Database and reflects the heritage themes of Darlington Hippodrome including novelty water, animal and technical acts in addition to highlighting the pantomime and Darlington Operatic productions.
Please note that for the purposes of research and full historical accuracy this database contains the early twentieth century language and terminology used to describe performers and acts, which may be considered offensive to modern audiences.