Hippodrome refurbishment successful

IT is gratifying that The Hippodrome at March is back in action again, albeit treating customers to meals, not films!

Congratulations to Wetherspoon’s on a restoration sympathetically in keeping with historical March themes. They bring back happy memories.

Before and during World War Two the Hippo as it was affectionately known played a vital moral role in the town. People flocked to watch Pathe News, celebrity comedians and of course, Wild West films as well as the occasional show organised by local groups.

March inhabitants derived much pleasure from going to the flicks at such a depressing time, and this occasionally extended to hard working German and Italian prisoners-of-war based at Friday Bridge.

American servicemen on furlough from local USAF bases frequently visited March and enjoyed going to the cinema. So too, did the town’s teenagers with their girlfriends hoping to get a seat on the back row! At times these were truly cosmopolitan occasions.

Fittingly, photographs of film stars of yesteryear adorn the walls of the Hippodrome’s impressively restored interior.

One shows internationally famous American actor Clark Gable serving as a crewman in the USAF he had happy times at March.

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Once in a while he stayed at The Griffin Hotel and I know he and his colleagues liked to visit the Hippodrome. It is especially appropriate that his image adorns the premises. I have seen a hotel registration card with his signature. It soon went missing!

I might add that some of the town’s public houses are looking very attractive including The Rose and Crown in St Peter’s Road and The George in High Street which have recently been freshened up. They look great.

TREVOR BEVIS

St Peter’s Road

March

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