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|Millfield Arts Centre|
Millfield Arts Centre
|Address||Silver Street, Edmonton|
Millfield Theatre opened in 1988 in the grounds of Millfield House on Silver Street in Edmonton, North London. It seats up to 362 in a variety of stage layouts.
The theatre has a lively and broad based programming policy and presents drama, dance, musicals, alternative cabaret, variety, popular music and children's events. Millfield also presents a major professional pantomime which is produced in-house. The theatre is reopening on 1 October 2009 following significant refurbishment, gaining a new cafe bar, performance space, toilet block and box office.
Millfield Theatre is owned, managed and funded entirely by London Borough of Enfield. It has 12 full-time staff working on site at the theatre, and employs many more casual staff. Ushers at the theatre are all volunteers.
Millfield Theatre is marketed under the umbrella of Millfield Arts Centre, which encompasses Millfield Theatre and Millfield House. Millfield House contains rooms which are available for hire, and also plays host to a number of educational classes and workshops for children and adults. This is marketed under the banner of Millfield Education.
History of Millfield House
The house is first mentioned in 1796 when it belonged to John Wigston of Trent Park. Later that year it was let to the Imperial Ambassador of the German Empire. The house was valued at £6,300 by 1828, when Robert Mushet of the Royal Mint died there.
The house was sold in 1849 to the Strand Union Guardians for a school for London workhouse children, and over the next 40 years several extensions were made to the house which by 1897 housed 400 children. The school was partly self- sufficient complete with two meadows, cultivated land and a herd of cows and some pigs. The children were taught trades; the boys, tailoring, shoe making and carpentry; the girls, housework, needlework and laundering.
By 1971 the house was acquired by the London Borough of Enfield, who renovated and demolished some of the work house buildings, although a lodge and outbuildings from that period remain as well as an early 20th-century lodge. The house was re-opened as an Arts Centre in 1979 and includes Millfield Theatre. Weir Hall library was on site until December 2008 but has since been relocated to Fore Street, Edmonton. The space has now been redeveloped as a cafe bar and performance space. In the gardens one of the few remaining communal air- raid shelters in Enfield can be found, adjacent to the garden is the St David's play area.
The Arts Centre plays host to comedy, musical, drama, dance, children's and music shows throughout the year. Most shows at the theatre are professional shows which the management bring in for a fee, or a split of the ticket sales. When hired, the venue offers the ability to sell tickets through its own box office, subject to a commission.
Artists due to play at the theatre in 2012 include Jimmy Greaves, Mica Paris, The Manfreds, Brendan Shine and Barry Cryer. At Millfield House several classes took place for adults, children and young people. Including Pilates, Chess, Youth Theatre, Drama, Manga, Dance and Art Club. Millfield House underwent extensive refurbishment in 2010/11.
The theatre is located close to the Great Cambridge roundabout, where the North Circular and A10 meet. The nearest railway station is Silver Street, and the following London Bus routes serve the area:
- History of Millfield House Retrieved 14 March 2008
- Baluch, Lalayn (31 March 2009). "Millfield Arts Centre begins £2.5m revamp". News. The Stage Newspaper. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
- [www.millfieldartscentre.co.uk] Retrieved 26 December 2010