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

17 minutes ago

At Hackney Showroom, $elfie$ by Malik Nashad Sharp, aka marikiscrycrycry, talks about issues of nationalism, gun violence and the black, queer aesthetic

27 minutes ago

FA Youth Cup second round: Leyton Orient 5 Sholing 0

09:30

James Vince blunted the much-hyped Australia attack but fell foul of England’s new number one enemy Nathan Lyon just when he was all set to tame the Gabba on a rain-hit day one of the Ashes.

09:00

Hackney Wick cruised to a comfortable 4-0 win in a bottom of the table clash against Burnham Ramblers.

08:18

Two goals from Sophie Bray sent England’s women into the semi-finals of the Hockey World League Final in Auckland, New Zealand.

08:00

Zoe spends a stylish weekend in Paris, visiting the newly opened Yves Saint Laurent museum

07:00

A seven-year-old boy was hit by a car on a zebra crossing outside his Hoxton school – where drivers are already banned from dropping their kids off.

Detectives are appealing for witnesses to come forward after a man was stabbed in the chest by a gang outside a busy bagel shop in Stoke Newington, leaving him with life-threatening heart injuries.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now


Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists