Established in 1878, Winter Gardens has never failed in completing its aim of entertaining crowds for years with exhibitions, ballrooms, theatres and much more. As one of the town’s most loved theatre destinations it’s no wonder the Winter Gardens is so popular.
Whether you’re interested in music, comedy, theatre, cinema or dance; Winter Gardens has it all.
Winter Gardens also conveniently has a choice of places to eat and drink and it's in the heart of Blackpool's town centre meaning you can make a day of it!
With a fantastic line up of shows and exhibitions for the season ahead there’s always something for everyone, visit their website to book your seats now.
All bus services pass through Blackpool Town Centre, and the tram will drop you just a 5 minute walk away. Located in St John's Square, take a short walk up Church Street if travelling by Tram.
Celebrated with a lavish opening ceremony 1878, the Winter Gardens is a triumph of architecture and entertainment set within six acres. Early attractions included a roller skating rink, a bowling green and a grotto designed to resemble sea caves as well as the Pavilion Theatre, Ambulatory, Floral Hall & Vestibule. The competition for visitors was intense in Blackpool, and Her Majesty’s Opera House was added in 1899 with the Empress Ballroom opening in 1896, two breath-taking additions to an already bustling entertainment complex.
Historic photographs illustrate the changing face of the Winter Gardens complex and its impact on Blackpool’s skyline, particularly the erection and removal of the Big Wheel. For many years the Winter Gardens management was in direct competition with the Tower management (the Tower opened in 1894) and this was a battle of the giants. But when the Blackpool Tower Company took over the Winter Gardens in 1928 the Big Wheel was removed the following year. The Blackpool Big Wheel has left a legacy, as the engineer W.B. Bassett went on to the build the Reisenrad in Vienna in 1897.
In the 1930s the Olympia Exhibition Hall was built on the former site of the Big Wheel, closely followed by the Spanish Hall Suite, Baronial Hall and Galleon Bar. The venue provided entertainment for holiday makers, day-trippers and residents alike.
The Winter Gardens has lent its many stages to stars of the radio, screen and stage, with many iconic acts performing within its walls: Charlie Chaplin (1904), George Formby (1939), Mae West (1947), Frank Sinatra (1950 & 1953), Shirley Bassey (1957), Eartha Kitt (1962) and many more national and international stars. The Rolling Stones were barred from Blackpool following their performance here in 1964 and the Stone Roses performed what would later be known as one of their most iconic gigs here in 1989.