The History of Leith

June 25, 2004

The Gaiety Theatre Leith

I came across this website today on the history of Theatre in Edinburgh and I thought it was excellent which included the following piece on the “Gaity Theatre” which stood in the old Kirkgate Leith. A photograph of the theatre can be found below and at and is well worth a visit

“In October 1886 the United Presbyterian Church in the Kirkgate moved to new premises and the old church building was bought by a Mr Edward Edgar who ran it as a music hall. This was relatively short-lived as the building was burned down in March 1888. In 1889 Mr Edgar leased the site to H.E. Moss who built his new Princess Theatre on it.

The opening was on 30th December 1889 and Moss ran it for ten years until the lease was taken over by Julian Malvern. The theatre was reconstructed and opened as the New Gaiety on 30th October 1899. The Gaiety went over to cinema about 1913 but re-opened as a variety theatre in 1944. The opening ceremony was by Will Fyffe on 3rd July. Final closure came in September 1956.

A Pictoral Post Card of the Gaiety Theatre 1909

This information courtesy Archie Foley.”

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