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Pullan's Theatre, Brunswick Place, Bradford (Now Rawson Street)

Formerly - Pullan's Music Hall

Bradford Index

A Google StreetView Image of Rawson Street, Bradford, formerly Brunswick Place. Between 1869 and 1889 Pullan's Music Hall was situated where the carpark is today - Click to Interact.

Above - A Google StreetView Image of Rawson Street, Bradford, formerly Brunswick Place. Between 1869 and 1889 Pullan's Music Hall was situated where the carpark is today - Click to Interact.

Pullan's Theatre was situated in Brunswick Place, off Westgate, Bradford (now Rawson Street), and originally opened as Pullan's Music Hall on Monday the 25th of October 1869. The Theatre's auditorium consisted of a Pit and Gallery, and could accommodate around 3,000 people. Constructed mostly of wood, but with a slate roof, the Theatre's flammable construction would prove to be its undoing some years later.

The Theatre was built for Henry Pullan who had previously built and run the nearby Coliseum in Westgate in 1849, often also refered to as Pullan's Music Hall. Henry Pullan would later go on to run the Star Music Hall and Prince's Theatre in Bradford in 1887. There is more about Henry Pullan's career below. A description of his new Pullan's Music Hall, and an advertisement for it, carried in the Bradford Observer in October 1869 is transcribed below:-

Pullan's New Music Hall
Brunswick Place (off Westgate), Bradford
Within Two minutes' walk of the present Hall.
Proprietor H. Pullan

H. Pullan, who has had the honour of catering for the Amusement of the Public for the last 27 years, begs most respectfully to inform the inhabitants of Bradford and surrounding neighbourhood that his New Hall will be Open to the public on Monday, October 25.

He has much pleasure in stating that the new Hall has been so constructed as to fully meet the requirements, and command the approval, of the numerous Patrons of the old one. He would call particular attention to one feature which all will admit to be of no trifling importance, that is the arrangements for facilitating the easy passing in and out of the Building of a large concourse of people.

As constructed, this Vast Hall, capable of accommodating upwards of three thousand persons, can be cleared out in the short space of four minutes. The feeling of security which the knowledge of this fact naturally produces cannot but enhance the comfort of the frequenters of an establishment where large audiences are expected regularly to assemble.

Mr. Pullan begs to assure the public that it is his firm determination to adhere to the liberal policy which has hitherto been attended by eminently successful results under his management. In rapid succession all the Eminent Artistes of the day.

DESCRIPTION OF THE BUILDING

A description of the Hall is here given to enable the public to realise its capabilities. The length of the Hall is 120 feet; its width, 72 feet, being 2 feet wider and 2 feet longer than the South London Music Hall which is now being re-erected, and is announced as the largest music hall in London.

The height of the ceiling is 41 feet; depth of stage 36 feet; width of the opening of the proscenium 30 feet. The chaste and gorgeous decorations, it will be acknowledged, surpass anything of the kind hitherto attempted at any Music Hall in the kingdom. The ceiling, which is of most elegant form, is divided into compartments, in the centre of which are garlands of flowers, supported by wide panels, containing medallions portraying allegorical groups representative of the following subjects:- 1st, Cupid found in a Rose; 2nd, Winter; 3rd Summer; 4th, Plato when a Child; 5th, the Finding of Cyrus; 6th, Spring; 7th, Autumn; 8th, Thetis rendering Achilles Invulnerable.

The proscenium and gallery fascia are of a gorgeous and elaborate style of basso relievo, embracing figures and other devices, modelled in an exquisite style of art, and producing an effect upon the eye which for grace and richness is almost indescribable. The beautiful Act Drop, representing the lake of Como, is executed by that eminent artist, Mr. W. Robinson, of the Theatre Royal, Leeds.

Mr. Pullan feels that an expression of his thanks is due to the following Professional Gentlemen and Tradesmen who have ably and expeditiously co-operated with him in carrying out his plans, viz:-

Leonard Metcalfe, Architect, Elizabeth Street, Little Horton, under whose plan the building has been constructed.

Messrs. Taylor and Edmondson, the eminent Builders, 67, Park Road, Little Horton, to whom has been intrusted the entire erection.

Mr. Joshua Hill, Slater.

Messrs. Spencer & Pullan and their staff of assistants, Paradise-street, who have executed the decorations under the designs of Mr. T. H. Johnson, artist to the establishment, and late of the Crystal Palace, Sydenham.

Mr. J. Cookson, plumber and gas fitter, Drewton Street, to whom the entire designs of the Gas have been intrusted.

About Henry Pullan

JUBILEE CELEBRATION IN BRADFORD

The ERA, 7th of May 1892

There was an interesting gathering at Southbrook Lodge, Great Horton-road, Bradford, on Friday night, 29th ult., when Mr Henry Pullan, the lessee of the Prince's Theatre and the Star Music Hall, entertained at dinner the members of his family, a few of his old friends in the business, and the staffs of the two houses of entertainment, to celebrate the completion by him of fifty years of theatrical management.

The career of Mr, Pullan, who has attained the ripe age of seventy-five, naturally represents an important part of the history of Bradford amusements during the last fifty years.; In 1849 Mr Pullan built the Coliseum in Westgate, the building which, known later as St. James's Hall, has been amongst those recently pulled down in connection with the improvement of Westgate.

In 1858 Mr Pullan went to Manchester, and there for six years, was tenant of the Victoria Music Hall. He then came back to Bradford, and first returned to the Coliseum, which had now become known as the Protestant' Working Men's Hall, after which he built and opened, in 1869, Pullan's Theatre of Varieties in Brunswick-place, destroyed by fire about three years ago.

In 1886 Mr Pullan became the lessee of the Prince's Theatre and the Star Music Hall, which are now under the management of his two sons, Mr Charles Pullan, and Mr James Pullan, though Mr Henry Pullan still takes a close interest in the control of both establishments. Since 1873 Mr Pullan has resided at Otley, and Mr Charles Pullan occupies Southbrook Lodge.

The guests at Friday night's gathering numbered in all about 130, and after dinner an interesting presentation was made in the billiard-room, where Mr John Sheldon was asked to act as chairman. Mr John Wainwright, in the unavoidable absence of Mr Hobson, of the Theatre Royal, Leeds, handed to Mr Henry Pullan, on behalf of the bands and the staff "behind" and "in front" at both the Prince's Theatre and the Star Music Hall, a handsome writing cabinet, and, on behalf of a few of Mr Henry Pullan's old friends, Mr Sheldon presented him with a silver cigar-case and a silver match-box. Mr Pullan, in reply, made a short but feeling speech, and afterwards Mr John Hart, of the Bradford Theatre Royal, and other gentlemen made brief congratulatory addresses, and Mr Charles Pullan had to acknowledge a hearty toast in his honour. Subsequently several ladies and gentlemen belonging to the companies now engaged at Mr Pullan's places of amusement and others present entertained the company with songs and recitations, and one of the most enjoyable items of this kind was a capital elocutionary effort by Mr Henry Pullan himself, the fulness of whose vigour and life were reflected in his ample hospitality. - The ERA, 7th of May 1892.

Some of the archive newspaper reports on this page were collated and kindly sent in for inclusion by B.F.

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