entertainment

A peek inside The Grand Theatre, Footscray

A few weeks ago I walked past the exterior of the old Grand Theatre in Paisley Street and wondered what it looked like inside. Thanks to a reader, Cr Nam Quach, I was introduced to the owner, Footscray businessman Peter Ki, who kindly allowed me inside for a look around and to take some photographs. Continue reading

White City ticket

A flutter on the monkeys

There’s nothing left of White City, the greyhound racing track of Tottenham. I know, because I walked along Sunshine Road looking for it. I wish it was otherwise, but there’s no trace. An Olex cable factory stands at the place where local race-lovers gathered three times a week to watch, cheer, and gamble.

And what were they betting on? Greyhounds. Whippets. Goats. Foot races. And monkey jockeys. Continue reading

“So fine a place of entertainment” – the lost theatres of Footscray

fiesta_bingo

On the face of it, the Fiesta Bingo Hall in Paisley Street, Footscray is a depressing, semi-derelict edifice, with various small businesses desperately trying to make a go of it at ground floor level. The upper part of the exterior is ruined – the Fiesta Bingo signage seems to get worse every time you look, with bits regularly falling off.

But walk around the back and you find something amazing. Continue reading

Sun Theatre, Yarraville

Sun Theatre and Coffee Palace, Yarraville

And so to my home suburb – Yarraville.

The Sun Theatre is probably Yarraville’s best known feature, and although it is a principle of my walk to focus on things that are little known rather than landmarks, I can’t pass by the Sun. For one thing, it is such a beautiful Art Deco building, one of the best in Melbourne. For another, it’s a great story of restoration. Continue reading