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Britannia Panopticon Music Hall

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Address: 113-117 Trongate, Glasgow G1 5HD, Scotland
Phone Number: +44 141 553 0840
Website
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: No
Description:

Britannia Panopticon is the worlds oldest surviving music hall. It opened...

Britannia Panopticon is the worlds oldest surviving music hall. It opened in 1857 above a pub called the Britannia Vaults and it served the working classes who made Glasgow the Industrial Capital of the World. For over 80 years Britannia entertained, and in addition to being a music hall, the building also accommodated early cinema, wax works, carnival amusements, freak show and basement zoo.Famous debut performances include Stan Laurel in 1906 and Jack Buchanan in 1911. Open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from noon - 4pm (unless a show is programmed) from April - November for general viewing.Britannia Panopticon is also open for music hall shows, silent movie and Laurel & Hardy film nights, marts, festivals and other events. Admission is generally free (we charge to get back out). Please donate when you visit to help us raise money to conserve this wonderful historic survivor from the heyday of music hall and early cinema. Britannia Panopticon is also available for private hire (conditions apply).

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$20*
and up
Merchant City Music Walking Tour of Glasgow
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 55 reviews
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A hidden gem

Just back from our evening at the variety show. Took my mum and her 2 friends as a treat, loved stepping back in time to a forgotten era. Each act was great, definitely go back... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
BB061
,
United Kingdom
via mobile
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55 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 53: English reviews
United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Just back from our evening at the variety show. Took my mum and her 2 friends as a treat, loved stepping back in time to a forgotten era. Each act was great, definitely go back again, praise to all those who are involved in bringing this theatre back to its former glory. Judith and the test of the team were... More 

Helpful?
Thank BB061
Level Contributor
588 reviews
302 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Great weird venue that was forgotten about and then rediscovered. Curious old music hall where Stan laurel first made his debut. Creaky curious and truly unique. Hard to initially spot unless you know where you are going and not very large when you do but very interesting.

Helpful?
Thank Sarah D
Scotland
Level Contributor
404 reviews
142 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 194 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Visited here as part of a walking tour, The volunteer tour guide had lots of dtories through the ages. Nice to see the place being restored.

Helpful?
Thank Salmo01
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2016

Excellent place to visit if you want to step back in time. The guide was very informative and the exhibits interesting and varied. Hope to take a trip back and revisit when they have a show on. Although there is no charge for viewing the music hall itself, £5 is suggested for a show

Helpful?
Thank Carol M
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2016

This was a surprising find, we were overwhelmed with the history of the music hall and the people that had visited. The staff on the day were informative, very pleasant and welcoming, comedians at times!! Having taken a photograph on stage we also had to act a part! Very good fun! The old piano had a few tricks, which we... More 

Helpful?
Thank dawn c
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
269 reviews
142 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 327 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2016

So much very old theatre history. Well worth visiting. Fun and interesting. Very helpful volunteers. Needs help with restoration - money - there is a lot to restore here.

Helpful?
Thank Whatbob
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2016 via mobile

I knew of this place from other publications but had never found it before. It is a gem, in a time warp. The oldest surviving music hall in the world, it is badly in need of tender loving care but is a capsule of history, kept alive by loving volunteers. You can come here and stand on the stage where... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Martin P
Northwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2016 via mobile

My Aunty booked this as a special visit. Our tour guide was so interesting & made the whole theatre come to life with his stories. My son was allowed to play the pianola - hard work for the feet but a good sound. Just had to make a donation for their time. Looks like an interesting menu of events planned... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Scottsontour2013
Newcastle upon Tyne
Level Contributor
25 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2015

This wonderful historic music hall was recommended by a 'local lassie' and my family called in on our way to the Isle of Arran.Well worth getting off the train for.We were left to make ourselves at home and appreciate the splendour of old time music hall, by performing on the stage a mother and daughter act, and then an accompaniment... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Pandas9
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2015

I visited during Doors Open week, after recommendation from family and friends. Entry is via stairs off the alley down the side of the building - fortunately this was signposted. The volunteers on duty were helpful without being intrusive, and visitors could ask questions or just have a wander round. The building, which has a fascinating history (see more on... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank DrMedieval

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