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Birmingham Hippodrome

Old & Grey

master brummie
There used to be a Hot Dog company in Brum called Ted's Ot Dogs with barrows at various sites around the city. Right now you're thinking what has this got to do with the Hipp' ? Well the owner of Ted's was one Ted Westley, who also played trombone in the orchestra and was the Birmingham Rep for the Musicians Union. He lived in Broadway and at one time drove a Honda S800. He once ran out of petrol and put paraffin in the tank, it ran but clouds of smoke poured from the exhaust.

norfolk brummie

gone but not forgotten
Have just viewed on BBC East, a lovely piece about the Gorleston company that are building the scenery for this years Birmingham Hippodrome production of 'Jack & The Beanstalk'.

They stated that it will be the biggest pantomime production in the UK, and looking at the scenery it should be a fantastic show.

I hope so, the scenery is costing a small fortune!!

In the forties & early fifties I saw many great stars, from both sides of the Atlantic, but the greatest was Danny Kaye.

In the early fifties, we would hold music sessions at Tony's Ballroom, next door, on Saturday evenings, after the ballroom had closed, and some of the visiting musicians would hear about the session, and would pop in for a musical 'blow'. Very happy days.

Best wishes to everyone for a successful 'panto' season. Eddie


master brummie
The Hippodrome panto has long been known as one of the best in England, but I did not know it was the biggest. They frequently have coach parties from all over England for the matinees, schools included. We have been taking our grandsons for a few years now. The best for special effects were the two with John Barrowman as the one had 3D, but the best for engaging with the children is Brian Conley. Saw the lovely Lynda Bellingham two years ago, Gok Wan and Stephanie Beacham last year and this year, (I can't begin to get interested in it) we have Chris Gascoigne who plays Peter Barlow in Coronation Street. I don't like Peter Barlow one little bit, so the panto is not something I am getting interested about as yet. Maybe later. I just love panto, couldn't care really who is in it, I just like a laugh.

tim eborn

master brummie
It must have been in the 50's that my mate Bertie Moyden's father used to have a weekly booking for a box at the Hip. It must have been to impress his better customers of there garage in Highgate Rd. Sparkbrook.

If no-one else were using it (the Moyden's were quite a large family) then Bertie and I were given the use.
I can only remember it happening on a couple of occasions and cant remember the "Stars" but for a couple of 12 or 13 year olds it was a real treat, being treated like Royalty!


master brummie
The thing I found curious about the Hippodrome Panto is that they always have these massive ads for the show with the stars this time around but there never seems to be a credit for the title role. On the positive side, they occasionally have an actor on the poster.


Hello Bob, I looked on Google for similar cars from that era and it could be a Singer but the detail is rather vague so I could not be sure.


master brummie
Hi Bob..I think thats a Singer 9 sports..approx 1932.3 next to a Austin 8 two door ..1938.9..and the rear end of a Austin 10 four door .To the left of the Singer is a 1950s..Ford Prefect..Roy


master brummie
I saw Johnny Ray at the Hip in the 50's, last year I saw South Pacific, this year My Fair Lady. My birthday treat for my sister is a two day trip to Birmingham with the theatre if there is a good show playing.

norfolk brummie

gone but not forgotten
Can anyone identify the the third car. Is it a Singer?
Looking at the sports car, I remember that in those days, one could park quite safely, without fear of the car being stolen, and in spite of the fact the cars of those days could easily be broken into. There was always the odd 'brake ins' but nothing on the scale of to-day. Police car chases, guns and drugs.

Ah well, back to the Hippodrome stories.

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norfolk brummie

gone but not forgotten
I saw Johnny Ray at the Hip in the 50's, last year I saw South Pacific, this year My Fair Lady. My birthday treat for my sister is a two day trip to Birmingham with the theatre if there is a good show playing.
Johnny Ray was backed by the Vic Lewis Big Band


knowlegable brummie
My Dad actually acted as a decoy for Johnny Ray when he was at the Hippodrome in the 50s. My Dad was just a lowly stagehand then. Ray needed to get to a car outside the stage door, but the press and a crowd were hanging around. So my old man, who was the same height and build as him, and had very similar hair, put a raincoat on similar to Johnny's with the collar turned up, pulled a hat over his head and legged it out of the stage door and up the street. Somebody shouted "there he is" and they set off after him. He got up to Bristol Street and pulled the hat off. The press following realised it wasn't him, and there might have been a bit of profanity. Meanwhile, Johnny Ray had been whisked off in a car.