The Grand Theatre Blackpool

Last month for my hubby’s Birthday we went on a Heritage Tour of The Grand Theatre in Blackpool. It is such an interesting and magical place that I created a journal page.


First I wanted to re-create the plaster work that is a feature of the theatre so I applied Pébéo modelling paste with a palette knife in straight lines along the border of my page using a stencil. Then I applied more modelling paste using a wedding place card as a stencil which had a die cut design that I thought looked like the intricate and delicate plaster work we saw. Once the modelling paste had dried overnight, I painted parchment coloured Liquitex acrylic paint over the whole of the page.  Next I added the cherub and rose images which are torn pieces of napkin, they are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. I painted Gold Size onto the page with a paint brush and applied some gold leaf, then added plasterboard/drywall tape over the top to mimic the patterned gold leaf in the theatre. I also applied gold leaf to some filigree cut outs, which are from a wedding favour box and added them to the modelling paste design. I used outline stickers to add the gold lines and small teardrop shapes to further compliment the modelling paste patterns and embellished it further with self-adhesive gem pearls. Our tour guide kindly allowed me to keep one of our tickets and the images of The Grand are cut from the Heritage Tour leaflet.  I adorned them all with gold leaf cut outs and pearls and stuck them to the page with double-sided foam tape. To finish I added two cameos that were in keeping with the Victorian Baroque theme. This page really reminds me of our visit; I was inspired by so many different design elements that we saw at the theatre which my hubby captured beautifully in his photos too.


The Grand was designed by architect Frank Matcham and was opened in 1894 after a construction period of seven months, at a cost of £20,000.


Matcham’s brief was to build the “prettiest theatre in the land” – I’m sure you’ll agree he achieved just that!


Matcham built over 80 theatres although now there are only about two dozen left. We feel very privileged to have been able to visit one of his stunning theatres and one in such good condition too.


We are also pleased to be able to support the marvellous work that The Friends of the Grand does, who were formed in 1973 to save the building from demolition. The first Friends were literally ‘hands-on’, painting the dressing rooms, repairing holes to the ceiling and getting the theatre into shape. Nowadays they raise funds towards projects such as the provision of new carpets, seating and technical equipment. The theatre is gradually being restored to its original Matcham splendour with the upholstering being changed back to its original blue English velvet, along with the plush curtains and draperies.


We also went back stage, which isn’t as glamorous as I thought it would be, very functional. This is the back of the safety curtain which is made from metal in case of a fire to prevent it spreading into the theatre. Over the years actors who have performed at The Grand have adorned it with their names, comments and the show they performed in.


Matcham designed seating on four tiers and you may notice that he thought of everything as all seats have a good view of the stage. This is truly a feat of engineering as there are no columns to block the view of the stage, the tiers being built on the steel cantilever principle.


The theatre is magnificent in every detail; the general scheme of decoration is in white, buff and pink. Alongside the intricate plaster work and gold leaf, there are many cherubs, flowers and spectacular paintings.


What better way to celebrate our tour than tea and homemade scones with clotted cream and homemade bramble jelly – my hubby requested these for his birthday and it was a delicious way to celebrate! I’m so pleased to say a big hello to the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – Happy T Day!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Parchment)
  • Sharpie Permanent Fine Point marker (Black)
  • Ranger Claudine Hellmuth Studio 6×6 Stencil (Our Town HSC36920)
  • Magenta Style outline stickers (Daisy Gold 93326G)
  • Hobbycraft outline stickers (Gold Scenes 5934211001)
  • The Works (4 Cameo Embellishments)
  • Poundland (Pearl Embellishments U-80929)
  • Gold Leaf
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Dunelm napkins (Grace 30220549)
  • Dunelm (Place Cards)
  • Tour ticket and leaflet
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Annie Sloan (Gold Size)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range Double-sided foam tape

36 thoughts on “The Grand Theatre Blackpool

  1. I fell in love with both your gorgeous art journal page, as well as your husband’s awesome photos. I really enjoyed the shot of the seats from the stage, and the cantilever levels was truly a marvelous idea. Your page truly reflected some of the more beautiful aspects of the photos, too.

    I’ve asked to keep my ticket before, too, and one time I was told they had to keep them to count the number of people who actually attended the performance. The usher allowed me to keep the iconic part of the ticket and he kept the seat, date, etc. part. Needless to say, I was very happy and apparently so was he.

    Your backstage looks typical to me. I agree with Halle that they are usually quite utilitarian. I have a musician friend who has played many venues, so I have seen some of those back stage areas and green rooms.

    Thanks for taking us on this wonderful birthday journey with you and husband. I loved that you shared the tea and homemade scones with clotted cream with us for T this Tuesday, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh wow-Victorian baroque was always my favorite. What a magnificent building and paintings!!! Fab journal page capturing the essence and textures too.
    And I must say that the back stage is quite interesting to view-albeit in a completely different way. Happy T day!
    PS- I included my pumpkin roll recipe on my T Day post:)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Linda, I am sure you would have loved this theatre if you like Victorian baroque – it was so ornate, a real feast for the eyes! Thanks so much for your pumpkin roll recipe too, I can’t wait to try it! Wishing you a Happy T Day! J 🙂


  3. Your journal page is wonderful, love all the elements, and the embossing, and how you combined it all. Glad you had such a wonderful visit to the theatre, and a great idea to make the page as a memento of it. Your scones look totally delicious, yummy, my mourth is watering at the thought of them. Have a great T day, hugs, Valerie

    Liked by 1 person

  4. what a building! this event is really worth a Journal entry! actually i also loved the back of the metal curtain, would be very interesting to investigate…
    happy t-day, jo!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Its a beautiful theater you visited , its good to see these old buildings restored and valued.
    The journal page you created looks fantastic, super embossing and gold additions.
    Cream scones are one of my favourite treats and yours looked yummy.
    Happy T Day
    Yvonne xx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. You did an amazing job on your page! I like how you really made it look like the ceiling. The modeling paste looks so light and pretty. So elegant Jo. 🙂 I loved seeing your photos too, and looks like you had a yummy little snack. 🙂 Happy T day Jo. Hugs-Erika

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Be-you-ti-ful! That collage really expresses the atmosphere of the theater and the stucco work.
    The theater itself is a work of art. I agree that it is very special not to have pillars. (the only old theater I know is Bath Theater, but they have pillars…). It is good to have a group of people that fight to keep it open. It costs a lot of money to restore and maintain. I suppose the income from the tour tickets contributes to that. Thank you for showing us the beautiful theater.
    Happy T-Day,

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! It was a lovely page to create and I’m so pleased to capture it in my journal so we can remember our visit! The Friends of The Grand have done such a fabulous job of conserving and restoring this wonderful theatre for all to enjoy. Wishing you a Happy T Day! J 🙂


  8. These old theatres can be pretty amazing and your photos show the wonders within, with the astonishing artwork and ceiling decorations. It’s good to know that this theatre is being restored and lovely to see all the details here.
    Your journal page is great with the way you made your own “ornate plasterwork”.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Looks an amazing place Jo – thank goodness for those that fought to stop the demolition and save and preserve it. You made an awesome memory page of your visit there. Love all the textures and details.
    Wishing you a lovely weekend… Gill xx

    Liked by 1 person

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