Spanish City Print
A4 print of our Spanish City, Whitley Bay original illustration on premium quality fine art textured paper with black cardboard mount included.
355mm x 279mm (with mount)
297mm x 210mm (without mount)
Please Note: The artwork printed onto this product is an original illustration, hand drawn and designed by Coastin' Along Ltd. who own all copyrights to the design.
A Brief Description
Located atop the dunes facing the seafront at Whitley Bay Beach, "The Dome" depicted in our hand drawn illustration was originally completed in 1910 and became a hub of activity and interest, not only because it was home to many attractions, but because of its stunning architecture and unique design. At the time it was built it was the second largest dome in the country, after St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.
After nearly a century of a very eventful history and many many takeovers from different groups promising major investment and regeneration, the plight to save the beloved Spanish City appeared to be hopeless. The fairground was demolished in 1999 and the last retail tenant moved out in 2002. Then, almost 18 years after the venue’s final closure, Spanish City reopened in 2018 following a restoration project that saw historical features brought back to their former glory and today boasts an array of new leisure facilities including; family-friendly venues, a high-quality steak and seafood restaurant, tearooms, event spaces and a Champagne bar taking residence inside the famous landmark.
A Brief History
A man called William Simcocks assembled a travelling troupe of entertainers and called them The Toreadors. They toured the Isle of Man, appearing under makeshift tents on seafronts and were seemingly a great success as they were well received by the public. However, William was declared bankrupt in 1906 but somehow managed to acquire the Theatre Royal in Hebburn-on-Tyne where he, together with the manager of the hotel next door to the theatre, spotted a business opportunity just across the River Tyne in Whitley Bay - a large village with a growing tourist industry.
William created a North East Toreadors group to perform in the area of Whitley Park. Appearing under makeshift awnings and temporary stages in a fenced area which they decided to paint with Spanish street scenes, the area became known as the Spanish City.
In 1908 the Spanish City, which had grown substantially over the previous two years, was officially opened. A simple three-arched entrance had been built facing the seafront and the area was now completely enclosed within a boundary. In 1909, large rides appeared, including a Figure 8 rollercoaster and a Water Chute. William and Henry wanted to make a statement and create a new, grand entrance to the fairground. They hired the Newcastle architects Cackett & Burns Dick to survey the site and begin drawing up plans for new Pleasure Buildings, which would lead to the construction of the Spanish City Dome we know and love today which was completed and officially opened in 1910.
Telegraph-wire cyclists, acrobatic comedians, singing jockeys, and mermaids all appeared at Spanish City during its first decade. One of the wings hosted the menagerie, where visitors could see hyenas, antelopes, and tigers. This was converted into the Picture House cinema in 1916.
During the First World War, the theatre was occupied by the military who left it in a bad state when hostilities ended in 1918. The management seized the opportunity to maximise its’ money-making potential by renovating it and converting it into a ballroom in 1920.
When the second world war broke out, the dome - a gleaming white beacon, was camouflaged with paint and netting to reduce the potential of it being used as a wayfinder for enemy bombers. After the war, the council wasted no time in bringing the town back to life however the dome remained grey until 1949, and even after being repainted the original whiteness could never be achieved.
In 1961, the ballroom was converted into a bingo hall, and the rest, as they say, is history!
Coastin' Along Ltd. own all rights to all artwork, illustrations, and designs that are created and sold by Coastin' Along Ltd. This includes this, and all other, artwork sold as prints via www.coastinalong.co.uk
All rights reserved. No part of this illustration may be reproduced or used in any manner other than it's intended personal use as a physical decorative piece without written permission from the copyright owner.