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THE COLISEUM, TERRACE ROAD, ABERYSTWYTH

Site Details

© Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey licence number 0100022206

NPRN 23271

Map Reference SN58SE

Grid Reference SN5837681870

Unitary (Local) Authority Ceredigion

Old County Cardiganshire

Community Aberystwyth

Type of Site CINEMA, MUSEUM, MUSIC HALL, THEATRE

Broad Class EDUCATION, RECREATIONAL

Period Post Medieval, 20th Century, 19th Century

Site Description 1. A wooden-built entertainment hall, known as Phillips' Hall after the proprietor David Phillips, stood on this site from 1891 until it burnt down in 1902. Phillips took the opportunity to build a magnificent new hall, the Coliseum, opened in 1905 with an arcade of shops below, some of which still remain although most have been subsumed into Peacock's store. Phillips' name is commemorated in mosaic panels at the entrances to the building, three of which currently survive.
At least 5000 events were staged at the Coliseum, including plays, films, eisteddfodau, political meetings and concerts, until 1932 when it was converted into a cinema. Nearly 4000 programmes of films were shown until closure in 1977. After lying derelict, the Coliseum was repaired, restored and opened in 1982 as a museum for the District of Ceredigion, which purpose it still serves.
(Source: Coliseum guide book, published by the Museum)
B.A.Malaws, RCAHMW, 13 February 2006.
2. Edward/Queen Anne style building; bull nosed rubble with terracotta dressings. Central pedimented gable with apex niche containing a statue of Edward VII. The bays are divided by Ionic pilasters; the two outer bays have 2-storey (2nd and 3rd floor) bowed oriels capped by lead roofed open peristyle cupolas; the Art Nouveau oriel brackets rest on keystones to the semi circular 1st floor windows flanked by bullseye windows. The 1st and 2nd floor merged to centre with full height small pane sash windows.
The interior of the upper floors retains much of the original Coliseum Cinema, now Ceredigion County Museum. It has a rectangular auditorium with a 2 tier gallery, elliptical proscenium arch and cast iron columns with Corinthian capitals.
(Source: RCAHMW files; CD/Domestic/SN58SE and Cadw listed building description)
C.H.Nicholas, RCAHMW, 12/02/2004.

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