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Stanley Halls, London

Norwood Junction is in South London, just shy of Croydon, Surrey. It is here you will find the new kid on the block in regards to venues – Stanley Halls.

“Acoustic Sessions at Stanley Halls” have been running occasional folk evenings at Stanley Halls located in South East London’s South Norwood for a couple of years.

The intention has been to present a full concert by an artist rather than replicate the folk club style of evening, so there will usually be an evening of two halves by the featured artist with music commencing at 8pm. For some evenings however there will be a support artist and main show.

Stanley Halls is a fascinating and beautiful Edwardian venue, built as a venue for theatre and performance for the benefit of local residents by a local industrialist, William Stanley whose ambitions for the building were influenced by the Victorian ideal that music could lead to cultural enlightenment and reaffirm moral standards. In the century since it’s opening, the Halls have seen use as a venue for concerts ranging from opera and music hall to punk rock – Captain Sensible went to school here!

In a bygone age, the canal used to flow through South Norwood where the railway-line now runs: Hence pub names like The Jolly Sailor and The Ship. Brian Doran from shanty-folk band The Salts grew up in Norwood, and the canal may be an answer as to how nautical songs got into the DNA of a band from landlocked Surrey.

The Halls have a fully licensed bar, stocking ales from local craft breweries. The venue is easily accessible by public transport, being just a short walk from Norwood Junction railway station which has fast links to London Bridge, Victoria, East Croydon and the London Overground network. There are also a number of bus routes that run directly outside the Halls.

Colin Doran

See their website here