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 Black Lion Leisure Centre - Gillingham - Kent

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Ivan Healey



Posts : 21
Join date : 2009-08-24

Black Lion Leisure Centre - Gillingham - Kent Empty
PostSubject: Black Lion Leisure Centre - Gillingham - Kent   Black Lion Leisure Centre - Gillingham - Kent Icon_minitimeMon Dec 07, 2009 2:37 pm

The playing fields at this location sadly no longer excist !

The leisure centre building has been extended and the playing fields and football pitches are now being built on.

An althletics track is already in place and grandstand seating and facilities are to follow. Going under the title, ' Medway Park' , it will be used as a training camp for the 2012 Olympics.

Before the leisure centre was built in the 1970's circuses visiting Gillingham used the famous ' Great Lines ', a large expanse of fields which over look the Medway towns of Chatham and Rochester. When the Army sold the Great Lines to what was then Gillingham Borough Council circuses were moved back down the road to the Black Lion Playing Fields.

Gillingham was always a good circus town until the Chatham Dockyard closed and then audiences dwindled, however some shows did do some memorable buisiness at the site. The shows with the most animals did the best !!!

1988 ROBERTS BROTHERS SUPER CIRCUS
1990 MARY CHIPPERFIELDS CIRCUS
1991 SIR ROBERT FOSSETT'S CIRCUS
1992 ROBERTS BROTHERS SUPER CIRCUS
1993 BOBBY ROBERTS SUPER CIRCUS - the very first stand for this 'new' show
1994 CHIPPERFIELD BROTHERS CIRCUS - terrible weather but excellent buisiness - suzanne chipperfields public tenting debut
1995 BOBBY ROBERTS SUPER CIRCUS

from 1996 - 1998 CIRCUS ATLAS used the site ( and in my own personal opinion it still should have been called ' BEVERLEY ROBERTS CIRCUS ' )

1999 ZIPPOS CIRCUS
2000 NETHERLANDS NATIONAL CIRCUS

from 2001 onwards Santus Circus used the site but from then on audiences seemed to have lost interest and wait until the 'back end' when bigger shows visit Rochester's Jackson Recreation Ground.

Sad that yet another circus site has gone, only this time not to anti's , but to developers !!!
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