Twice Nightly
"Twice Nightly": An Illustrated History of Entertainment in Preston - David Hindle
Get the habit -‘Twice Nightly’. So said the theatres and cinemas of yesteryear to patrons of the many establishments which Preston has boasted: The Hippodrome, The Empire, The King’s Palace, The Gaiety Theatre Music Hall (later the Prince’s Theatre,) and the New Victoria. All gone now but not forgotten in this unashamedly nostalgic book. The author takes the reader on a journey to the past, to a time when many independent theatres and cinemas thrived, before the advent of television and multinational leisure groups. This was a time when families had the opportunity to have a pleasant night out together and still have some money left for fish, chips, a bag of ‘scraps’ and a bottle of pop after the show. Within a broad chronological framework Preston might be seen as a microcosm of the progressive changes of provincial entertainment in the industrial north west. Before the advent of television and multinational leisure groups the town had up to five live theatres and twenty-two cinemas.

As a Prestonian, David Hindle was born during the heyday of Preston’s cinemas and at a time when the two major theatres were enjoying a short-lived boom preceding the decline of the genre of commercial music hall and live theatre entertainment during the 1950s. Regular attendance at most of these venues has helped to stimulate his interest as a theatre historian. Research has focussed on the Cinema and Music Hall industry to today’s Guild Hall Entertainment Complex where scores of famous names including Bing Crosby have added glitter to the illustrious names of the artists who have trod the boards in Preston and are fully detailed in the appendices. David Hindle’s well illustrated book is sure to stir the memories of all theatre and cinema-going people, who once queued ‘twice nightly’ in all weathers to see their favourite turns.

This synopsis of the book "Twice Nightly": An Illustrated History of Entertainment in Preston, by Davide Hindle is reproduced with the permission of the author and publishers. A fuller version will be reproduced in the near future.

Carnegie Publishing
Carnegie House
Chatsworth Road
1999, ISBN 1-85936-072-6, £9.50p.

All of the author’s royalties from sales of this book have been shared equally between the following two charities:
Derian House Children’s Hospice, Chorley and St. Catherine’s Hospice, Lostock Hall, Preston.
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© David Hindle 1999