Beautiful, Haunting Photos of a Crumbling UK Theater

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Manchester’s Hulme Hippodrome is a crumbling beauty hidden within an unassuming, modern facade. Inside, the theater’s Rococo touches, cracked plaster, and plush, red velvet speaks of a bygone era when talent was still required to hit the stage and variety performances were the talk of the town. The Hippodrome saw the likes of comedic duo Laurel and Hardy, Nina Simone, and many other famous faces since its opening in 1901. The decadently decorated musical venue has been deserted since the ’80s, though there are recent efforts to restore the largely abandoned spot.

Luckily photographer Andrew Brooks has been able to capture the theater in all its decomposing glory. His camera is like a ghost, peering beyond darkened stairways, invisible in the shadows. The fisheye perspective he employs contributes to the already eerie, dreamlike quality in each image. The artist teamed up with writer Hayley Flynn to document their city’s forgotten spaces, ravaged by time. Flynn shares stories about each location on her blog, the histories of which are fascinating. Explore the haunting Hippodrome in our gallery past the break.

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks

Image credit: Andrews Brooks