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Music Hall


Originally with classical front and rear elevations; that facing the Square is stone-faced with entrance in the centre. On either side were windows fronting a restaurant and Tourist Information Office. Above, a giant pedimented portico with attached Ionic columns. The rear wall, in College Hill, was once the main entrance: the ground floor here corresponds to first floor at the opposite end owing to the difference in ground heights. There were two doorways leading to the stage and a third which is bricked up. A giant order of six pilasters with a moulded wreath in each intervening space united the upper floors. Only two long windows appeared on this side. On the ground floor was a small cinema seating 100.

The Music Hall was a long, flat floored room with pilastered walls. The proscenium, curtained, and entrances alongside a retractable bleacher seating unit. Three rows of seats were placed on the flat floor, 15 on the bleacher unit, and the remaining five on a fixed balcony.

Behind the stage was a crossover. The forestage, 2.4m (8ft) deep, that had covers when lifted would reveal an orchestra pit.

The theatre was closed in January 2009 when the newly built Theatre Severn replaced it.

Austin-Smith:Lord was commissioned to sensitively restore and convert the Grade II* listed Music Hall and Assembly Rooms into a museum and art gallery for Shropshire County Council.

Officially opening in 2014, the Museum and Art Gallery has been created within the music hall, making use of its stage and dressing rooms.

Built / Converted
Dates of use
Current state
Current use
Other use (museum and art gallery)
The Square, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY1 1LH, England
Further details
Other names
  • 1840 Design/Construction:
    Edward Haycock the Elder
    - Architect
  • 1980 Alteration: fire escape erected
    - Architect
  • 1981 Alteration: new entrance constructed
    - Architect
  • 1984 Alteration: old balcony demolished; stage relocated; pilasters repaired and new added
    - Architect
  • 1986 Alteration: various alterations
    - Architect
  • 1995 Owner/Management: Shrewsbury & Atcham BC, owners
  • 2009 - 2014 Alteration:
    - Architect
  • Capacity
  • Listing
Stage type
Limited pros. Flat
Building dimensions: -
Stage dimensions: Depth: 22ft Width: 42ft
Proscenium width: 28ft
Height to grid: 37ft
Inside proscenium: -
Orchestra pit: -