Dudley Hippodrome battle ‘lacking any sense’

The fate of Dudley’s landmark former Hippodrome building looked sealed today – with council bosses saying campaigners lacked any ‘sensible’ plans for it to be saved.

Dudley Hippodrome
Dudley Hippodrome

They are now pressing forward with controversial plans to demolish the landmark venue.

Demolition plans will go back before Dudley Council’s planning committee in the New Year.

It comes just days after the old theatre, sitting in the shadow of Dudley Castle, marked its 75th anniversary with a renewed campaign to save it.

Dudley Council’s regeneration boss, Councillor Judy Foster, has halted campaigners’ plans to re-enter the Hippodrome to gather details on refurbishment works needed, citing fears over safety.

But the friends group desperately fighting to save the building have called the refusal a ‘deliberate ploy’ to bring down their campaign and branded the accusations over their proposals ‘nonsense’.

The group drew up a business plan to showcase how the former theatre and Gala Bingo building could be saved.

But an independent assessment ordered by the council found the plan was ‘unviable’.

Councillor Foster said: “The proposal from the friends group was assessed independently and the outcome was clear in terms of it not being a viable option, which is why the council will not be considering the proposal any further.”

He added: “We have always made it clear that sensible proposals for the building would be considered, however, in the absence of such a proposal the council will continue to explore the option of demolition.”

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Comments for: "Dudley Hippodrome battle ‘lacking any sense’"


This is utter rubbish, the council voted against the demolition on August the 5th 2013, for the Chairman to realize that was not the outcome they wanted to hear, so voted for a deferment, now they are saying exactly the same thing they said 12 months ago, before they got a hired help in to dismiss the proposals to save the building.

I refer the council to the original deeds set in stone by the then Earl of Dudley that a Theatre or playhouse should always remain on the site.

Dudley will thrive again if the theatre was restored to it's former glory, yet the backhanded tactic's to destroy the building is coming from the Zoo who have their eye on the site for a number of year's now.

The fight will go on!


Politicians should do the will of the people, not work against it. Get active knock doors, vote these Councillor's out, you can do it and it would focus all their ideas in the future.

John Smaith

I think the sooner this eye sore gets knocked down the better. Not everyone wants this building to stay no matter what the protesters say.


John, you are as blinkered as the Councilors of Dudley, an eyesore that could bring Dudley back to life in the evenings instead of it being the ghost town we all know & hate. Wake up, every great town & city has a thriving Theatre. but not this one what a waste, like the people who don't belong here anymore.

John Smaith

rovi.osinborn I don't think its blinkered at all. It will take more than a falling down building to restore Dudley's nightlife.

I think people who think it will ever be turned into a theatre or wedding venue are delusional. Its going to cost millions to get it useable again and where is that money going to come from.

I find it funny that no one was interested in doing anything with the building until it was going to be knocked down.


If this could be a wonderful thriving profitable theater why have no plans come forward before?

I agree it COULD be. I also think England COULD win the World Cup. However both are highly unlikely.

It it had a realistic chance of being a wonderful thriving profitable theater then it's owners would have done something about it sooner.

It's an ugly building of zero architectural merit that is standing in the way of a development that will bring jobs, money and people into the town. It's demolition would smarten up a key gateway to the town and improve its image. Build a new, more architecturally pleasing theater if you think there is enough demand, people will support you if there is.

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