Proudly standing in the heart of Hemel Hempstead’s Old Town High Street since 1852, The Old Town Hall has been a buzzing arts space since 1978. From hosting famous faces from the world of comedy, to showcasing the work of emerging and critically acclaimed performers, The Old Town Hall boasts a varied and high quality programme for local audiences of all ages.
Some of the more famous names include comedians Eddie Izzard, Steve Coogan (of Alan Partridge fame) Jo Brand, Alan Davies, Ardal O Hanlon (Father Dougal in Father Ted) Paul Merton, Jack Dee, actors Kate Beckinsale (daughter of Richard, and star of small screen), Mark Thomas and the ever popular Reduced Shakespeare Company.
Every season our intimate 120-seat theatre plays host to an enthralling and thought-provoking programme of live theatre from a wide variety of professional touring theatre companies. Young theatregoers aged between 16 – 25 years old can enjoy £5 tickets to shows by signing up to The Old Town Hall’s UpStaged membership scheme.
Saturday day times are dedicated to the little ones with family films and children’s theatre shows to inspire and delight. Grown-ups can also relax in front of a classic, popular blockbuster or international cinema at our regular evening film screenings.
In addition to our 120-seat theatre, we run a regular programme of comedy and music in The Cellar Club and host exhibitions in the Robert Adams Gallery. The Gallery is open from Monday – Friday, 10:30am – 5:30pm and one hour before shows in the evenings, where drinks and snacks can be purchased from the bar. With its stunning views of St Mary’s Church and free WIFI, the Gallery Bar is the perfect place to relax with friends before shows and during intervals.
The Old Town Hall is a welcoming and inclusive venue, playing host to a number of community organisations and workshops. Weekly workshops include Trestle Theatre’s M-ask Well-being Drama Programme for young people, Herts Inclusive Theatre workshops and Hartbeeps Multisensory musical fun classes for babies and toddlers. Other arts workshops on offer are life-drawing classes, Let’s Dance Classes for over 55s and scriptwriting meetings.
From September 2018, we are celebrating our fortieth year as an arts venue with a special autumn season of events named Festival at Forty.
There is a small and dedicated team working behind the scenes to ensure you have a wonderful experience every time you visit. Sara Railson is the Arts Team Leader and looks after programming, Annie Smith is Lead Officer of Arts Operations, Jane Howard is Marketing and Communications Officer and our Technician is Nick Woods. We have a super team of box office staff and a friendly team of stewards led by Debi Johnson and Lou Wilson.