St George's Hall
156 High Street (next to W&G), Colchester, CO1 1PG
St George’s Hall was built in 1851 as a political meeting hall and subsequently used for a huge range of activities including variety performances, as a hospital during the wars, and for dinners and Victorian lectures and demonstrations. Please see Dorian Kelly’s fascinating history of the building for more information.
The hall has a high ceiling, a small stage, a Shoreditch-style atmosphere and a good acoustic, and could probably seat around 220 people without the 20th century additions. Below the hall, on the lower ground floor level, are several rooms.
Roman River Music held the first concerts in the hall for 117 years as part of the 2015 festival, and discovered that the hall has a fantastic acoustic.
A large volunteer team led by architects HAT Projects cleared the hall of accumulated junk, cleaned half a century of dirt, painted the 20th century walls and installed temporary seating, lighting and fire exits. The boarded up windows and peeling plaster remained. Read more on the project.
Use of St George’s Hall was by kind permission of Greene King, with many thanks to the manager and staff of the Duchess Pub.