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Charles Dickens' London
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ON THIS DAY IN LONDON

22nd February 2002 The Millenium Bridge was re-opened after a 5m de-wobbling redesign.

22nd February 1953 Comedy actor Nigel Planer, Young Ones, was born in Westminster, London.

22nd February 1940 Born today: Julian Chagrin, London, mime/actor (Golddiggers)

22nd February 1928 Born today: Bruce Forsyth, London England, comedian/TV host (Generation Game)

22nd February 1907 1st cabs with taxi meters begin operating in London

22nd February 1892 Lady Windermere's Fan by Oscar Wilde premieres at St James (London)

22nd February 1868 Celebrated magician David Devant born David Wighton in Holloway, London.

22nd February 1684 Born today: William Pulteney, London, statesman (Earl of Bath)

Weston's Music Hall



Weston's Music Hall

The first full-length feature film premiered here in 1914

Location: 242-5 High Holborn, WC1V 7EN

Description: Weston's Music Hall was a music hall and theatre that opened on 16 November 1857 at this very address.

Constructed on the site of the Six Cans and Punch Bowl Tavern, the licensed victualler of the premises, Henry Weston had already transformed the former Holborn National Schoolrooms into a music hall several years before.

This purpose built hall was his response to the success of Charles Morton's Canterbury Music Hall in Lambeth. In 1861, Morton struck back by opening the Oxford Music Hall, nearby in Oxford Street; a development Weston opposed on the grounds there were already too many music halls in the area

In 1906, the theatre auditorium was remodelled by Frank Matcham at a cost of 30,000 pounds, and was renamed the Holborn Empire, becoming a part of the Moss Empires group, remaining as the last surviving variety theatre in the West End, also performing special theatrical matinees.

The theatre premiered the first full-length feature film in 1914, The World, the 'Flesh and the Devil', a 50-minute melodrama filmed in Kinemacolour.

In 1926, comedians Flanagan and Allen were booked by Val Parnell for a debut at the theatre, and Margaret Lockwood made her first stage appearance at the age of 12, in 1928, as a fairy in A Midsummer Night's Dream.

The building was hit the following night by another bomb and too badly damaged to reopen. It was finally pulled down in 1960.


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Weston's Music Hall

The first full-length feature film premiered here in 1914


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