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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): MCC/CL/ES/EL
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1893-1965
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 6.16 linear metres
Name of creator(s): MCC | Middlesex County Council x Middlesex County Council


Administrative/Biographical history:

The County Council exercised control over public performances of music, dancing, stage plays, cinemas, boxing and wrestling. Anyone seeking a licence to hold public entertainments had the option of submitting building plans to the County Engineer, enabling him to find out in advance if the plans complied with legislation. The plans were reported upon in detail to the Entertainments Committee by the County Engineer. Notice of the application had to be placed on the site or building, and time was given for any interested person to lodge objections with the Council. Whether or not the plans had been submitted for approval, application for a licence still had to be made as normal upon completion of the building.

All licenced buildings were visited by Council inspectors before renewal of the licence each year. Inspections were also made from time to time during the progress of entertainments, particularly in cinemas, to ascertain that the regulations were being complied with. Heavy penalties were imposed for infringement of the regulations.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the Middlesex County Council Clerk's Department relating to entertainments licensing, 1893-1965, including orders, reports and regulations concerning licences; applications for licensing; reports on the building requirements of premises seeking licences for music, dancing or stage plays; writs, reports and correspondence; prosecutions against unlicensed premises; police reports relating to Sunday opening of cinemas; stage play bonds, and pamphlet 'A short history of the cinema in Middlesex 1910-1965'.

Papers relating to individual premises including cinemas, hotels, music halls, canteens, hippodromes, cafes, arenas, dance halls, lecture halls, sports arenas, restaurants, skating rinks, working men's clubs and theatres.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

MCC/CL/ES/EL/01: General; MCC/CL/ES/EL/02: Individual buildings.

Conditions governing access:

Available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to these records rests with the Corporation of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Acquired with the records of its parent authority, the Middlesex County Council, and with successor authorities.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

For further information on the history of the Middlesex County Council please see Middlesex by Sir Clifford Radcliffe (2 editions, 1939 and 1953), LMA Library reference 97.09 MID; and The County Council of the Administrative County of Middlesex: 76 years of local government, 1 April 1889 to 31 March 1965, by Middlesex County Council (1965), LMA library reference S97.09 MID.

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
April to June 2009

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