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THE QUEEN'S PALACE. SUCCESSFUL OPENING. The Queen's Palace was formally opened on Monday amid the most promising indic- ations for its ultimate success. We have al- ready given a full description of this palatial and gorgeous place of entertainment. The ex- I ternal appearance of the building gives little idea cf the completeness of the interior. When one reflects that two months ago the roof was not en, it is simply marvellous that so mag- nificent a hall should have attained such a. finished state within so short a period. The rapidity with which the building has been pushed forward has not been either at the cost of efficiency. There is no scamping. The minutest detail has received the most careful treatment and though there are nec- essarily many matters requiring attention the inside of the palace as well as the roof ear- dens are fully completed and equipped icr the entertainment and amusement of the people of Rhyl. This is the result of the as siduoms attention which night and day has been paid to the work by those responsible for it. The whole has been under the per- sonal supervision of Mr. Biddiscombe, one tf the syndicate and [r. C. J. Richardson, the able young architect from whose plans ;nei designs the buildings have been erected. Air. James Richardson, the chairman, and Mr. II. E. Doughty, the solicitor, have also been indefatigable in their efforts to bring about the opening en Monday, and the successful start made must be highly encouraging and satisfactory to them. The Palace on Monday presented a most charming app-'ar. ance. It was a veritable temple of art. The beautiful paintings in the ceilings, the ex- quisite taste of the colours employed in lie balcony decorations, and the wealth of leaf embellishments excited the admiration of everyone present. The stairs, lounges and the whole of the balcony as well as the Cafe and Foyer are covered in a richly-designed Turkey Pile carpet. The sides of the ballroom are provided with settees upholstered in ruby plush, while on the balcony tip up' stall chairs are provided similarly upholstered. The effect produced by the electric light was especially admired. Inside there are no less than twelve arc lamps of two thousand candle power each. Two of these are ruby coloured and two blue. These are turned on for the purpose of shadow dancing, being supplemen- ted by powerful lights of a similar hue re- flected from the stage. As the dancing pro- ceeds these different lights are turned on al- ternately, and the sight from the balcony as the dancers disport themselves in the coloured shadows is one of exquisite beauty. The roof gardens, which are fitted with palms, planes, rustic kiosks, and ferneries, proved a popular retreat, whilst the luxuriously-fitted a, d furnished refreshment bar did a capital busi- ness. Altogether it is an ideal place of enter- tainment. Plenty of variety is afforded, arc! there is none of the restraint which character- ises the general run of seaside entertainments. Three or four hours can be spent here with- out any part of the time becoming monoton- ous. Such a place of amusement has long been wanted in Rhyl, and the fact that on Monday close upon 5,000 paid for admission, and that on subsequent evenings during the week full houses have been the rule, is the most convincing testimony of the popularity of this form of entertainment. We may add that the accoustic properties of the room are all that can be desired, and what is going on on the stage can be distinctly heard in the most extreme point of the room. THE OPENING CEREMONY. At two o'clock on Monday Mr. H. A. Tilbv, J.P. (Chairman of the Rhyl Urban District Council), performed the opening ceremony. He was accompanied on the platform by Councillors Dr. G ircllestone, J.P. (Vice-Chair- man), J. H. Ellis. J.P., F. J. Gamlin, J. W. Jones, Thomas Whitley, Joseph A. Williams, A. Maltby, W. Winterbcttom, and J. S. Green- halgh. There were also present the following members of the syndicate:—Messrs. James Richardson (Chairman), H. E..Doughty (So- licitor), W. Biddi,scombe, J. Robertson, and J. Marsh, proprietor of the Empire Theatre, Battersea. At the outset Signer Gherardi sang the Na- tional Anthem. Mr. James Richardson then stepped forward, and, addressing the large audience which had assembled, thanked them for their presence that day, 'and for giving their confidence and support to an undertaking which they hoped would- not only be for the benefit of Rhyl as a town, but also for the promoters of it (ap- plause). They came to Rhyl perfect strangers I some seven months ago, and he was afraid that at the outset their movements were re- garded with a good deal of suspicion. But they persevered steadily and industriously with their project, and as the people of the town saw 'that building grow up they had ceased to be suspicious, and had given iheri their confidence and support in no un- grudging manner. They did not want to cele- I brate the cpening that day by any elaborate function, or by inviting one of the aristocracy to perform the ceremony. They preferred that the opening should partake of the identifica- tion of the town through its Chairman and the Council with their undertaking (applause). That building had been provided for the gratification not only of Rhyl itself, but also for the visitors to Rhyl, and upon whom Rhyl depended (applause). They felt that in Khvl a place of that kind was wanted, and that fact had been abundantly proved during the last few weeks by the expressions of approval that had been uttered by scores of residents and visiters alike. He trusted if anything went on in that building, that was contrary to the feelings and taste of anyone, they as directors would take it as the greatest pleasure if it was reported to them, for their desir; was to conduct that building in a proper and legi- timate manner, free from all vulgarity or any- thing in the slightest degree objectionable, and and tOo the gratification of all who visited it (applause). He believed that the Queen's Palace would bring a number of people to this town who had not previously visited it (hear, hear). There was one thing which they wanted, and he hoped the Council would as- sist their Syndicate in securing it, and in. ■: was a better railway service (lcud applause;. A mere unsatisfactory service than that to North Wales he did not know of. His col- leagues and himself had often to wait foy. five minutes at Chester, and fifty minutes at Crewe for their connections, and this was the experience of nearly everyone coming north of Manchester. He could not understand hew such a state of things could exist on the main line of the London and North-wertern Rail- way. The Syndicate would only be too happy to co-operate with the Council in doing all they could to secure the improvement of th's service (hear, hear). As he had said at the outset they had not intended to have any opening ceremony at all, but on reflection they thought it would only be appropriate to invite the Chairman of the Council to make an official declaration of the opening, and he had at once acceded to their wishes (applause;. Ir. H. A. Tilby, who was cordially re- ceived, said it had had given his colleagues and himself much pleasure to come there txiat afternoon to show ther appreciation of the services which the promoters of that under- taking had rendered to the town, and to wnh them success in it (applause). As a Council, they were at times somewhat evenly divided as to the day, the hour, and the place at which a musical performance might be gj ell (laughter). Still they were absolutely unani- mous in their desire to encourage in every possible way any enterprise which would add to the attractions of our beautiful town, and the entertainment of visitors (applause). He need not point out to them that Rhyl had bem long far famed for its sea, its sands, and its sunsets, whilst most of their visitors would tes- tify to its general healthiness. The most emin- ent medical men in the country had over and over again pronounced in its favour as a 'O T. ..L- -¿1- health resort, it was oniy some two inunuis ago since that distinguished surgeon, Sir James Sawyer, speaking in the Alexandra Hospital in the presence of the Prince and Princess of Wales on the occasion of their visit to Rhyl, said—' Here in Rhyl with its bright and sunny skies, its temperate seasons, its fresh sea breezes, and its ozone-lader air, there is a maritime climate unsurpassed for salubrity in our islands' (applause). That was a testimony of which they were naturally proud. The very best recommendation a sea- side place could have was a clean bill of health. During the last ten years the Council had spent a very large sum of money—no less a sum than £ 25 per head of the population— in order to secure an abundant water supply and to make their sanitary arrangements as perfect as anything human could make them, and he thought they had fairly well succeeded (applause). But their visitors like Oliver Twist cried for more. They complained', and there was some justification for it, that the amusements provided in the town were not all that could be desired. That was a very diffi- cult question for the local authority to deal with. If they provided an outdoor band they had immediately a complaint from those who were providing indoor entertainments that they were entering into an unfair competition with them, for the combination of the balmy air of Rhyl and outdoor entertainments was too strong for those held indoors. On the other hand, if they showed a disposition to safeguard the interests of the indoor caterers, they were in once charged with extending them an undue protection. He asked them to pity the sorrows of a much-tried Council (laughter). He, however, thought that with the provision cf that magnificent place of entertainment that the time had now arrived when the visitors would cease from troubling and councillors 'be at rest' (laughter). He had been asked to formally declare that building open. His task was comparatively a simple and easy one, and one which he felt much honoured in being asked to perform. It was the desire of the management to provide a thoroughly good show free from the slightest element which was objectionable. They had certainly a most excellent place in which to provide the entertainment. It would be difficult for any- one to find a building which would excel the one in which they were assembled in the three corners of the kingdom. Thev had heard from Mr. Richardson that the directors had set for themselves a high standard of excell- ence, and he had asked that if there was any- thing in the performances which was offensive to the taste or the sentiments. of the patrons of he place that they should extend the direc- tors their assistance in suppressing it. They had spared no expense -In providing that place of entertainment, and he trusted that there would be extended them such a measure of support the undertaking In this way, but also rture upon which they had embarked (ap- plause). He understood that the directors were issuing books containing 50 season tickets at a charge of £ 1 Is. He trusted that the residents would buy these books, and not only support the undertaking in this wya, but also by calling the attention of their visitors to the performances at the Queen's Palace (applause). His task was now dene, and in the name of the whole of the members of the Council, whose mouthpiece he was, he wished the pro- moters of that undertaking well, and that they would reap from it the financial success they so well deserved. He had much pleasure in declaring the Queen's Palace open to the pub- lic (loud applause). Mr. J. S. Greenhalgh said he had much pleasure in proposing a vote of thanks to Mr. Tilby for the graceful and able manner in which he had performed the opening cere- mony, and to the members of the Council for their presence. It was only ten months ago that a start was made with that building, and that day was one of the happiest days in his life. For twelve long years he had been planning this in his own brain. It was too. gigantic a scheme for one individual or for Rhyl capitalists to undertake, and he, there- fore, put it before some Lancashire men of capital. Hitherto, owing to; past failures, a certain amount of suspicion attached in Rhyl tOo new enterprises. But Rhyl had wiped off that stigma by the support they had given that Syndicate. They had had to deal with the County Council, with the Rhyl District Council, with the Rhyl magistrates, and with the press, and the verdict of rr. Doughty, Ir. Biddiscombe, lr. Richardson, and the Syndicate generally, upon whom the- brunt of the work had fallen, was, 'They have granted us all that we have wanted, and not grudging- ly they are a good sort, the very best fellows we have met' (applause). That was the ver- dict of Lancashire capitalists of Rhyl people. It had indeed been a source of great pleasure and encouragement to them to be so well supported. He only hoped that the visitors; would extend to them the sanse support, so that the undertaking might be the success it deserved to be (applause). The vote was seconded by fr. Richardson, and carried with hearty cheers. It was ap- I propriately acknowledged by Mr. Tilby, who again urged upon the residents to take up the season tickets. THE ENTERTAINMENT. The programme at the Palace this week is one of undoubted excellence. What has struck us is the remarkable popularity of the dancing. Though this is the first ballroom built in Rhyl, and the first time that public dancing has been encouraged, the number who have indulged daily in this delightful pastime has been surprisingly large. What also has impressed us is the obvious respectability of the dancers, and the perfect order and decor- um observed. It has apparently given as much pleasure to onlookers as to the dancers, for such a scene of life and gaiety never fails to charm. The band is under the conductor- ship of rr. Theo. McDonald. Of the artistes, each of whom give three turns, the fresh, young voice, and artistic singing of Little Lena Snaith appeal at once to the apprecia- tion of the auditory. She appears in a series of popular songs, which are bright, new, and catchy. Miss Connie Williams is a most graceful and skilful dancer, while the charac- ter songs and dances of Miss Beatice: Renee, the American soubrette, are exceedingly clever. rr. Leonard Barry, the great comedian, is in rare form, and sings all the songs which has made him so popular in excellent style. He 13 particularly successful in 'The Moucher.' She was a Strange in London,' ai-id I Oh, be careful, my friends,' are among the songs which he sings, while on Monday he gave by re- quest 'Darling Mabel,' of which he .is the composer. Signor Gherardi, the celebrated tenor, has also met with much success. He has a robust voice, of comprehensive register, well controlled and highly cultured, and sings in artistic style and taste. On Wednesday the Palace was thrown open in the morning for dancing, and there was a great crowd of spectators. II









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