After visiting the lovely Brockley Open Studios and seeing some wonderful artists and their lovely art works, myself and my Dad, took a stroll along to Crofton park as I fancied a wander down memory lane and wanted to see The Rivoli Ballroom. I only expected to see outside but I just wanted to see it. I love The Rivoli, it has been there since the 1880s and I have always thought it a pretty magical place. I went dancing there when I was a teenager but haven’t been back since.
I’m pretty sure it was the current owner who invited us in to take a look around and told us about the pretty secret smaller second ballroom. I hadn’t even heard of it before, let along seen it – we went in to see the lovely ceiling which is covered in beautiful romantic paintings. So lovely.
The Rivoli is one of those places that totally befits a tea dance and of course ballroom dancing, Frank and Peggy Spencer used to dance there, Strictly Come Dancing’s Len used to dance their and so did my parents, who met at their dance class at The Royston Hall in Penge, and many others. Lots of music videos have been filmed there (White Stripes, Florence and the Machine, Tina Turner, S Club 7, Kylie Minogue, Rihanna…) and my guess is films too. It’s beautiful.
There are these beautiful chandeliers from the 1700s and 1800s and the dance floor, and side bars are pure elegant old-fashioned glamour.
I would love to hold a dance there as unfortunately fairs are no longer allowed as they damage the floor…it’s another dream I hope to come true in the not too distant future.
I felt very special walking around there with my Dad and it was the end to a lovely day.