Throwback Thursday: The Britannia Panoptican Music Hall, Glasgow

The Britannia Panopticon in Glasgow began life as the Britannic Music Hall in the late 1850s. Items on the bill included dancing girls and comic and ballad singers and it was also a popular haunt for prostitutes. A Mr and Mrs Rossborough took over to clean things up and revamped the interior and increased the range of acts.

The building was one of the first in Glasgow to have electricity and one of the first cinema venues in Scotland. It eventually closed in 1905, in part because of increased competition from other entertainment venues in the city but reopened with new owners a year later.

By now it was renamed the Grand Panopticon – derived from the Greek pan meaning everything and opti meaning to see. Apparently it was a name no one could remember so it was referred to as The Pots and Pans! It finally closed down as an entertainment venue by 1938. When I took this photo (shortly before the pandemic began) it was being restored and cared for by charitable trusts as one of the oldest surviving music halls in the UK and where Stan Laurel of Laurel and Hardy fame made his debut.

Categories: Glasgow, Scotland | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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