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Donald

 

That shows the original lido and entrance to the pleasure gardens. It is before 1896 because you can see the Falcon Cliff Winter Garden, so nearly 20 years before the Colliseum was built. The wall still standing is that shown on the extreme left of the MNH picture. The "bridge" from the back of the Colliseum joined the Lido/Opera House in the middle where they joined. The palace when built would have been to the right of the entrance, and you couldn't access it from the promenade but had to go through the gated entrance and inside the gardens.

 

Where the arch is with 'Palace' is where the road way is now and the right hand kiosk is the health spa corner, where the late night burger lace was originally, below the open air swimming pool, and terrace. That is an early picture because there was an arcade of shops, just like those in front of the Castlemona., extending all along the promenade, by the time the Colliseum was built.

 

The idea was you paid entrance and spent the whole day in the grounds, with music, entertainment drink and food, and could dance and then go to a show in the evening.

 

By 1920 or so the various premises owned by the syndicate or amalgamated companies (as they were known) could seat/accomodate about 23,000 people inside if you include the Grand Theatre in Victoria Street and Buxtons next door

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My family were from Manchester and Oldham TJ, but like many cotton families they had summer second homes in the IOM going back to the 1880's and some retired here. She was one of the ones who retired here. My grandparents generation, and she was from the generation before that, had summer homes in Cleveleys as well. The wives and children stayed in Cleveleys the entire summer and the menfolk used to catch the morning train to commute on Mondays and came back on Fridays. Some of them clubbed together and bought their own carriage. It's bizarre.

 

So my dad spent summers in Cleveleys, but often caught the tram to Fleetwood and the boat to Douglas, to visit his relatives who were staying here or had moved here. He was at college with a number of Manx students, including Steve Cubbon who went on to be headmaster at Foxdale and Norman Quine whose brother was custodian at Peel castle in the early to mid 1960's.

 

When I was a child I visited here often, including my granddad bringing me over by tram and boat, and sometimes we stayed over. I spent glorious summers here, 6 or 8 weeks when I was 5, 7 and 11.

 

My aunt (loose term she would have been a great great aunt) stayed with a Mrs Quine in Peel who was the owner of the house powered by gas. She was the aunt of Norman Quine and I believe its where my mum and dad spent their honeymoon in 1947.

 

That do you TJ?

 

No, you missed a comma.

 

Thanks for the info. When you say "cotton families", what do you mean? Can't be ordinary workers, being able to afford second homes away on Ta Eye La Man? [P.S. That isn't an attack or anything, I'm just curious as to the background of that.]

Edited by Thomas Jefferson

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They owned cotton mills 4 generations back, 3 generations back one ran the mills, one ran a mill machinery engineering factory and the third travelled the world setting up cotton factories, installing the machinery his brother manufactured, and overseeing the first years operations. They had a younger sister, Catherine, who ran the entire family finances and a waster brother who had two wives at the same time. He ran a pub and a pawn brokers.

 

I've still got contracts for setting up mills in India, st Petersburg and Egypt.

 

When Catherine died, single, in 1910, she set up a trust that had as it's life beneficiaries all of my grandparents generation, her brothers children, all died childless apart from my grandparents, who had my father.

 

Unfortunately everything was invested in cotton shares and in the 1920's and 1930's most of the shares weren't only worthless they were a liability. Each £5 share was £1.25 paid so when the companies went bust, one by one, the shareholders had to kick in the unpaid £3.75.

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Surprising how few pics are available

This is the only interior picture of the Coliseum that I've been able to find Donald

post-2905-0-25115900-1394483986_thumb.jpg

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And here is a picture of the gardens, the ballroom and opera house (far left back) before the shops and the Colliseum. Taken from where the Grasmere used to be, and another facing the Grasmere, hand coloured

post-2905-0-61446400-1394484473_thumb.jpg

post-2905-0-36331900-1394523670_thumb.jpg

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A lot more recent, but worthy of note regarding the Swing Bridge.

 

post-35120-0-61867300-1394497186_thumb.jpg

 

And from the early 90's showing the demise of the Lido/Palace.

 

post-35120-0-05706700-1394497727_thumb.jpg

 

post-35120-0-85890600-1394498002_thumb.png

 

And Petula Clark on at the Villa with Ivy Benson.

 

post-35120-0-82053700-1394498830_thumb.png

 

Anyone remember the hyponotist at the Villa; was it Joe somebody or other...lived in Foxdale, by the lake.

 

TBT.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Joe Karma, did the Villa and Sunday nights at the Gaiety. Then Ronrico came along

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Why is demise wrong LDV? It means end or death. The building was demolished, that was its end or death. Its downfall, on the other hand, was lack of repair and maintenance over 50 years. Not being demolished. Its downfall may have led to its demise.

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I don't think I'd ever come across the word as referring to something to non living, except for the legal use where it means something different.. it can mean end, as you say.unsure.png Sorry.

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Fantastic pictures and information, particularly from John. Keep it going folks. There were no listed buildings in the Island and it is only in the last fifteen years that any sort of preservation orders were introduced. I haven't got the information off the top of my head, but I'd doubt that what does exist would stand up against a determined developer and a weak or biddable planning department.

 

I would argue though that the overwhelming reason for the loss of much of our heritage buildings was greed, self-interest, cupidity and stupidity. I'm as nostalgic as anyone but it has to be recognised that for all its heyday charm and beauty the Island always was (and still is) very good at separating fools from their money. The tourists would often be relieved of their wallets on the ferry coming over - either by pickpockets or the crew; and once they got here there were more scams and tricks than a Persian market. It was said that grown men would weep on the beaches if even one tourist got on the ferry at the end of their fortnight with a shilling still in their pocket. In the 1960's the goose stopped laying, buildings were demolished without a backward glance, and the foundations of the next racket were put in place.

 

Sadly too, then as now, we have always largely been led by self-interested landowners and businessmen who doubled as part time politicians; whose short term interests, craven enrichment, and shady deals; were usually at the expense of long term vision for the Island and the protection of its heart and soul.

 

Plus ca change......

Edited by Shake me up Judy

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