Thursday, October 24, 2013

Living Radically: 120 Years of Battersea Town Hall

This year, we are celebrating the 120th anniversary of our Victorian Town Hall...

From its early days as Battersea Town Hall to its current use as Battersea Arts Centre, our building has always hosted radical thinkers and their ideas.
Over the last 120 years, the building has witnessed feminist speeches, socialist uprisings, tea dances, air raids, and boxing matches.

John Archer, the first black mayor of a London borough, was based here. Battersea MP John Burns, the first working class member of the Cabinet and proud "son of a washerwoman", gave many speeches here, as did Suffragettes Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst. For over 30 years, the building has been home to Battersea Arts Centre.

BAC pioneers new practice in contemporary theatre with the development of Scratch in 2000, the creation of Punchdrunk's Masque of the Red Death in 2007, and the support of UK theatre artists such as Kneehigh, Nic Green and Kate Tempest. But we are also interested in the many thousands of people who have passed through the building, such as the people who worked at the Town Hall, or audiences who have seen shows here.

In the Waiting Room off the Main Foyer you'll find a collection showing a snapshot of our history and the people who have passed through our doors.

Open Monday to Saturday 10am until 11pm, alongside our Scratch Bar, serving fresh local food and drinks, come and explore the exhibition before or after a show, or relax in our welcoming spaces.

This display has been made possible through the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Arts Council England and Wandsworth Council, and thanks are also due to Wandsworth Heritage Services.