Search

Why Hackney has always been ‘the place to be’

PUBLISHED: 17:47 28 June 2016 | UPDATED: 17:47 28 June 2016

Hackney Carnival, photo Catherine Gillo 2006

Hackney Carnival, photo Catherine Gillo 2006

Archant

A new exhibition on how Hackney has always been “the place to be” and “done things in the biggest and best way” in the world of entertainment has launched at Hackney Museum.

Swimming in Victoria Park Lake Swimming in Victoria Park Lake

Residents are being invited to take share their memories and attend guided walks for ‘From cinemas to clubs and carnivals’, which tracks the history of pleasure and leisure here over the past 300 years.

Starting in the early 1800s, the exhibition shows how rich city merchants had luxurious second homes in what was then a “rural retreat”, where they would entertain friends and family.

Then by 1880 the population had increased dramatically with almost 200,000 inhabitants from a diverse range of backgrounds.

This was when the entertainment industry boomed, with music halls and pubs popping up everywhere.

The Standard Theatre in Shoreditch High Street The Standard Theatre in Shoreditch High Street

Museum officer and curator Rebecca Odell, said: “The museum has done a lot of exhibitions recently on the First World War, when it came to deciding a new theme we thought we could do with something a bit cheerful and we wanted to look at something radically different.

“Having a quick look at our collection we realised we had a wealth of material about leisure activities and how people have had fun in the borough over the years.

“As soon as we started researching we found out Hackney has always led the way. It’s been the innovator and done things in the biggest and best way and it’s worth celebrating.”

“It didn’t take long to realise what an amazing place Hackney has been in that regard.”

'Prime Bang Up' at the Mermaid Tavern 'Prime Bang Up' at the Mermaid Tavern

The country’s first ever purpose built cinema was the Amherst Cinema in Dalston, and the Standard Theatre was at its time the largest theatre in Europe in Shoreditch.

Meanwhile the largest area of marked out football pitches in Europe can be found on Hackney Marshes, and the first ever commercial television studio was launched at the Hackney Empire in Mare Street.

The museum in Reading Lane is running a summer programme of events with guided tours every Thursday until September 3, culminating with the Hackney One Carnival on September 11.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hackney Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hackney Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hackney Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hackney Stories

5 minutes ago

The 51-year-old discussed the pride he felt after he watched his son play for England C in March and is delighted to see Josh Koroma called-up too

35 minutes ago

There are plenty of sporting events going on across Lee Valley Regional Park to keep youngsters in London busy during half-term.

Yesterday, 17:00

The goalkeeper called time on her career after Sunday’s 1-1 draw with London Bees and hailed the support of her team and the fans

Yesterday, 16:30

The Argentinean said: “Daniel Levy and I have spoken at length about our aspirations for Tottenham Hotspur. We both share the same philosophies

Yesterday, 16:26

Three remarkable women in Hackney have been honoured at the third annual I Love Hackney Mayor’s Civic Awards.

Yesterday, 15:55

For the past year, passing through the London Overground station at Hackney Wick has felt like walking through a construction site.

Yesterday, 15:30

The O’s director of football has had two bouts of depression in the past, but is enjoying life at Brisbane Road and will be there on Sunday

Yesterday, 14:17

A Hackney drug dealer’s remarkable journey out of crime and conversion to Islam has been documented in a pair of films.

PROMOTED CONTENT

To celebrate LGBT history month, Hackney resident Amanda talks about her journey to becoming a foster carer, with the council’s support and training.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now


Newsletter Sign Up

Hackney Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists