Birmingham Hippodrome

Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre

Access information

The address of Birmingham Hippodrome is Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, West Midlands B5 4TB.

If you are coming by bus, please note that due to city centre redevelopment many buses have been re-routed. We recommend you call Traveline on 0870 608 2608 for up-to-date details.

If you are coming by train, Birmingham New Street train station is a five minute walk from the theatre, and Birmingham Moor Street train station is 11 minutes. Birmingham New Street Station is undergoing construction work, so the layout of the concourse is subject to changes. There are entrances at Hill Street and Stephenson Street as well as access via the Bullring link bridge. For the theatre use the Hill Street entrance.

If you are coming by car, there is a car park at the Arcadian Centre, opposite the front of the theatre. The car park has allocated bays for wheelchair users with easy access to street level. If you are coming to an evening performance you can  pre-pay for  your  parking. You can pay a flat rate in the car park ticket machine after 5.30pm.

There are two entrances to the theatre – one in Hurst Street and a side entrance in Thorp Street. The main Hurst Street entrance has a ramped entrance on the right hand side with a touch button.  The doors open outwards. The Ticket Sales counter will be directly in front of you.  Headsets, large print and braille cast lists can be collected from the cloakroom which is to the left.  If you would like to listen to the introductory notes, you should collect your headset in good time to take your seat 15 minutes before the start of the performance.

The main foyer is to the left, up four steps. There is a staircase directly ahead which takes you up to level 2. There is a lift to the right, as well as more stairs, which take you to all 4 levels of the theatre. There is a bar on the far side of  the foyer and a deli bar to the left, offering homemade sandwiches, hot and cold food, cakes and snacks.
Stageside, a brasserie-style bar, is just over the road from the Thorp Street entrance and is fully accessible from level 2.

There are accessible toilets on every level and bars on levels 1, 2 and 3, as well as Sales points, selling ice-creams, soft drinks and confectionery.  The Hippodrome Restaurant is on Level 3.

If you wish to pre order drinks for the interval, these can be brought to you at your seats. Please tell the staff when making your order if you would like this service.

The auditorium was built in 1899 originally as a circus, and has changed very little over the years apart from some refurbishment. It seats approximately 1800 people – 800 downstairs in the stalls, and 1000 upstairs in the circle. The circle is large and steep, and there are handrails on either side. Level 1 entrances bring you in at the back of the stalls area, Level 2 at the bottom of the circle, Level 3 – half way up the circle, and level 4 – at the back of the circle.

A prominent feature of the auditorium is the safety curtain which is painted with a design especially created for the Birmingham Hippodrome by Balraj Khanna [BAL-RAJ car-NA].  The design is called ‘Astral Dance’, and the whole curtain is covered with vibrantly coloured abstract shapes, in mottled blues, reds, yellows, purples and pinks.  These shapes are scattered against a warm smudged background which is yellow at the bottom, blending into a salmon pink and then into a richer reddish pink at the top. The shapes themselves are abstract, yet reminiscent of certain things – a spiral could be a snail, other shapes, birds with outstretched wings. Kites, a foot, sea-urchins, a cross, rings, or an orb are all suggested. Strings of painted colour ripple vertically across the design, the ends attached to some of the shapes, loosely tying them together, yet allowing them to float freely. The work harks back to the circus origins of the building but also echoes the currently-held scientific theory that the universe began with a Big Bang – all existing matter being originally part of a whole.  Although not obvious, the shapes contained in the picture can be put back together to form a unified whole.

Please note that this information has been supplied by the venue and although every effort has been made to check details, you may still have some queries. In this case, we would ask you to contact the theatre direct for clarification.

Further information and contact details

Guide dogs are welcome at the Birmingham Hippodrome. Guide dogs are allowed into the auditorium, but theatre staff will also be happy to look after them during the performance.

If you are bringing a guide dog, you will probably have informed Ticket Sales when booking your ticket. However, if you have not, could you please let the theatre know by calling 0121 689 3064 or 3192 between the hours of 10am and 6pm, Monday to Friday.  You can also call these numbers if you require any further information before your visit.  Please ask to speak to Liz Leck.

Further information is also available on the theatre’s website, including up to date information regarding the city centre redevelopment.