OBE

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The Selsey Pavilion

The History Wall - an educational Resource for schools and residents.

Design and hand painted by Pamela Howard.

The Selsey Pavilion, also known as Selsey Hall, and Selsey Cinema was built in 1913 on the site of an old thatched house in the centre of Selsey High Street, West Sussex. The  frontage of the building remains today much as it was. It has always been a multifunctional building, being used for live shows and dinners and a recruiting centre for the 1st World War. Many famous performers  booked on the ‘No 1 South Coast Touring Circuit’ played in Selsey, including Sophie Tucker, Flanagan and Allen, even in 1925 The Russian Ballet, and other Vaudeville acts. Local dramatic societies such as SCAMPS  and IMPS  the Selsey Minstrels and the Selsey Follies. By this time the Pavilion had become a year round entertainment centre for residents and visitors alike. In the summer the population rose to 5,000! By 1941, having survived a fire in 1926, the Pavilion had become a full time cinema with special Saturday Cinema shows for children, which many older residents today fondly remember.  In 1996, the building became used by a business handling  disposable catering supplies for airlines, and fell into disrepair. It was saved by the present owner Mr Jeff Alan, a local builder, whose intention was always to give it back to the community on his retirement. The Selsey Pavilion however, is now part of a larger urban regeneration vision for Selsey, and is the single iconic building in the High Street. In 2014 the local Arts Charity, Arts Dream Selsey staged a promenade performance ‘The End of the Journey written by local writer Gillian Plowman, based on R.C.Sherriff’s play Journey’s End. This revealed the huge potential of the Pavilion, and the vision of Reconstruction and Renaissance began.  Building work is due to begin shortly, and in the mean time, plays and choral works continue to be staged keeping the building alive and in the public eye. The proposed History Wall, a hand painted mural listing as many as possible names of those who trod the boards, will be completed as soon as the structural work has been done, and an original Community Opera Eddi of Manhood End based on the poem by Rudyard Kipling is planned to celebrate the completion of the works. The initial development is supported by Selsey Town Council, and West Sussex County Council. The Blue Heritage Plaque was erected in January 2107.