Letter: Blue Plaque for site of Horsham Capitol

A 1930s photograph courtesy of Major Barry Lane of the Royal Sussex Regiment Museum Trust. The photo, taken at camp in Arundel Park, shows Major Middleton, and the men of the 4th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment who built the Capitol Theatre.
A 1930s photograph courtesy of Major Barry Lane of the Royal Sussex Regiment Museum Trust. The photo, taken at camp in Arundel Park, shows Major Middleton, and the men of the 4th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment who built the Capitol Theatre.

May we take this opportunity to thank Wendy Worsfold for her letter regarding the proposal for a Blue Plaque in memory of the men of the 4th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment, who built the original Capitol Theatre/Cinema in 1923.

What a contribution that was to the people of Horsham and the surrounding area.

The project has won approval all round; from Swan Walk management, their landlord, the Horsham Society, the Royal Sussex Regiment Museum Trust, the Royal British Legion, Jeremy Knight of Horsham Museum, and our MP, Jeremy Quin.

We have also contacted the relatives of Major Rupert Middleton, who are delighted at the news.

It was Major Middleton who came up with the idea of the Capitol Theatre/Cinema, in the first place, to provide work for out of work bandsmen.

Many are the favourable comments on the Memories of Horsham Facebook page about the proposal as well.

We have passed all the relevant details onto a colleague who is familiar with the complex procedure involved in securing a proper Blue Plaque, as the management of Swan Walk and the landlord have expressed a wish, with which we all agree, of having a proper Blue Plaque in place. As things develop we will keep people informed.

More details about Major Middleton and the Royal Sussex Regiment can be found on the Blue Flash Music Trust website, www.blueflashmusictrust.org.uk by going onto the page, Blue Plaque Quest-Capitol Theatre.

Attached is a 1930s photograph courtesy of Major Barry Lane of the Royal Sussex Regiment Museum Trust. The photo, taken at camp in Arundel Park, shows Major Middleton, and the men of the 4th Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment who built the Capitol Theatre.

Robert Mayfield

Challen Court, Hamilton Road, Horsham