Pavilion Theatre & Horseshoe

The earliest theatre in the Winter Gardens complex, the Pavilion had its debut in 1878 as part of a “superior gardens and pleasure grounds” remit.

With a unique horseshoe enveloping the Pavilion, this came into use when audiences inside the venue became too large – a regular occurrence at the close of the 19th Century and the start of a new millennia.

Originally intended to provide concert recitals, the Pavilion was actually marketed towards day trippers and was home for several years to circus acts and aerial and “dare-devil” shows. Following a transformation in 1897, the Pavilion became one of the most opulent venues in the UK and its Horseshoe was a popular “promenading” circuit where the landed gentry regularly could be seen.

While days of the promenade are now strictly an outside activity, the Pavilion is still in regular use for a number of exhibitions and fairs.


  • The Pavilion Theatre was originally designed by Thomas Mitchell
  • Summer shows which have appeared at the Pavilion include Morecambe and Wise, Hylda Baker and Tommy Cooper
  • The seating capacity inside the theatre could range from between 600 to well over 1,000
  • Architects behind its 1897 revamp, Wylson & Long, were also responsible for the Empress theatre in Brixton, Chelsea Palace and Tottenham Palace in London as well other work on the Winter Gardens

Pavilion Theatre Accessibility

The Horseshoe and Pavilion are located on the ground floor with flat level access throughout. There is an accessible toilet and level access standard toilets available near the lift at the West Horseshoe. There are further standard toilets down the stairs shown at the rear of the horseshoe.

For accessible bookings, use our dedicated access line and please make sure to explain your particular access requirements when you book your tickets

Dedicated Access booking line: 01253 749273.

Pavilion Theatre Events and Tickets

Unless otherwise stated tickets are available via TicketMaster UK, in box office or by calling 0844 856 1111, links are supplied from the individual event pages to the relevant booking pages.

In some instances, tickets may be available via different platforms.

You can see all of the upcoming shows for the Pavilion Theatre and all other Winter Gardens venues by visiting our What’s On page.

Seating Plans

The Horseshoe and Pavilion is a multi-layout arena and changes for each event.

Key Information

  • Capacity: 900
  • Ideal For: Conferences, Meetings, Exhibitions, Concert, Dinner Dance

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