Living history exhibit on display at Stanley Halls: Dec 4

The Lives of Stanley Halls: Theatricals, Community and Entertainment, a touring exhibition, has its special introductory night at the South Norwood venue tomorrow night, December 4.

Taking a view: local residents are taken on a guided tour behind the scenes as Stanley Halls continues being refurbished. Photograph by Angie Davila

Taking a view: local residents are taken on a guided tour behind the scenes as Stanley Halls continues being refurbished. Photograph by Angie Davila

The exhibition has been organised by the Stanley People’s Initiative and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

It will be open to the public on special days in the Halls and at various public venues in South Norwood and Croydon from January.

The exhibition displays information about the building of Stanley Halls by local businessman and philanthropist William Stanley between 1903 and 1911, as well as how the Halls have been used.

The Lives of Stanley Halls reflects the hard work of the volunteers on the project in a very short space of time and their research shows how much the building played a part in the life of the local community over the years.

The exhibition only covers a fraction of the material volunteers found while working on this project and going through old files from the stores of Stanley Halls. A stream of snippets of research will soon be appearing on Twitter @StanleyHalls with #StanleyLives and more extensive stories are appearing online.  

In addition, the Stanley Halls Channel on History Pin will have more histories and photographs populating it over the holiday period and we encourage people to add their memories and information to this crowdsourcing website: http://www.historypin.com/channels/view/id/44300/#.

The Good Old Days: How the stage used to look at Stanley Halls around a hundred years ago, from a picture discovered in the venue's archive

The Good Old Days: How the stage used to look at Stanley Halls around a hundred years ago, from a picture discovered in the venue’s archive

Highlights include the opening ceremony for Stanley Halls in 1903, information on musicians William Hurlstone and Samuel Coleridge Taylor in the 1900s, the suffragettes’ meeting held in the Halls in 1912, the happy memories of people seeing and being in pantomimes and performances as well as the use of Halls for baby clinics and celebrations of all kinds such as birthdays, weddings, and anniversaries.

“It has been a pleasure to work with such a dedicated team of volunteers during the Lives of Stanley Halls project,” said Phillippa Heath, the project co-ordinator.

“Throughout the project’s duration the volunteers have undertaken extensive historical research and carried out numerous oral history interviews with members of the local community. Thanks to this incredible undertaking, they have brought the history of Stanley Halls to life and have revealed the substantial impact of the Halls on the South Norwood community.”

This July, the Stanley People’s Initiative – which is taking over the management of the building from Croydon Council – became one of the first groups in the country to receive a Heritage Lottery Fund Sharing Heritage grant. Sharing Heritage is a new funding programme to help people explore, conserve and share all aspects of the history and character of their local area.


Coming to Croydon


    • Inside Croydon: Croydon’s only independent news source, based in the heart of the borough – 262,183 page views (Jan-Jun 2013)
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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in Activities, Art, Community associations, History, Music, Norwood Society, South Norwood, Stanley Halls, Stanley People's Initiative, Theatre and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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