Victoria Hall deaths explored

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A TRAGEDY that left 183 children dead will be explored at a talk.

On June 16, 1883, entertainer and magician Alexander Fay and his wife Annie put on one of their popular shows in Sunderland’s Victoria Hall.

At the end, he promised presents for all 2,000 youngsters present and began to scatter prizes into the audience. Hundreds in the gallery stormed down the stairs to receive theirs, but the doors were bolted.

A total of 183 children were either suffocated or crushed to death in the stampede.

The Fays: Tragedy and Trials, will explore the day’s events, who bolted the door and what happened to Alexander Fay.

Dean Arnold will lead the talk at Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens on June 30, at 2pm. Admission is £1.