The first theatre to be built in Reading was completed in Friar Street
in 1788 by the actor manager Henry Thornton. This was demolished and
a new theatre built in the same site in 1895, the rebuilt theatre having
been designed by Frank Matcham a leading theatre architect. The building
was destroyed by fire in 1937.
A second Theatre, the Palace, was opened in Cheapside in 1907. This
was designed by WGR Sprague but was demolished in 1961.