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Angles

494

A country town theatre, first on Lincoln and later (from 1847) on the Norwich circuit. In 1897 it became part of a school and was considerably altered internally. In 1977, however, Richard Leacroft made a careful survey of the building and discovered sufficient evidence to enable him to produce an account of its internal arrangement (Theatre Notebook Vol XXXII (2)).

The basic structural shell survives - a plain brown brick rectangle measuring 18.28m x 7.92m (60ft x 26ft) inside the walls, with a pitched roof. Internally it now consists of a hall with a timber roof and a room partitioned off at one end, and a basement below.

Under the floor Leacroft discovered a beam which had formerly supported the front edge of the stage and also beams which had supported the front edges of the side boxes and front boxes. These beams revealed a rectangular arrangement of boxes similar to Richmond Theatre Yorkshire (q.v.). He also found, part-way up the height of the partition dividing the hall from the smaller rooms, beams which had supported the gallery, and two cast iron columns which rose from the basement to support these beams. The line of the auditorium ceiling is also original - flat over the pit area and sloping upward over the gallery area. Thanks to this careful research it has been possible to add considerably to our knowledge of the design of a typical Georgian country playhouse. In 1978 an amateur theatre/cinema was opened in the building, which was renamed the Angles Theatre.

A fire in 1991 caused some damage. The present theatre does not, however, reflect the precise original extent and form which, nevertheless, remains recoverable.

Built / Converted
1793
Dates of use
Current state
Extant
Current use
Theatre
Address
Alexandra Road, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 1HQ, England
Website-
Further details
Other names
-
Events
  • 1793 Design/Construction:
    Unknown
    - Architect
  • 1793 Owner/Management: Lincoln Circuit
  • 1847 Owner/Management: Norwich Circuit
  • 1897 Owner/Management: School use
  • 1897 Alteration: converted to school
    Unknown
    - Architect
  • 1976 Alteration: reconverted to theatre
    Unknown
    - Architect
  • 1991 Owner/Management: Wisbech Town Council
  • 1998 Owner/Management: Wisbech Angles Theatre Charitable Trust (Freehold belongs to nearby Spiritualist Church)
Capacities
  • Capacity
    Later
    Description
    1978: 120
    1991: 100
  • Capacity
    Current
    Description
    112; studio 80
Listings
  • Listing
    II
Stage type
End stage flat
Building dimensions: 60ft x 26ft (internal)
Stage dimensions: Depth: 20ft rear wall to beam line plus approx 12ft apron floor Width: 26ft
Proscenium width: -
Height to grid: 3m (11ft)
Inside proscenium: -
Orchestra pit: -