Skip to main content

Batty, William, 1801 - 1868



  • Existence: 1801 - 1868


William Batty (1801–1868) was one of the most successful Victorian circus proprietors in England.

Batty started his career in circus as an equestrian performer and by 1836 he was running his own circus. Batty trained some of the most significant circus performers and personalities of his time including Pablo Fanque and William Frederick Wallett aka The Queen’s Jester.

Batty managed the prestigious Astley's Amphitheatre from 1842 to 1853 and later leased it to William Cooke, who took it over until 1860.

In 1851, Batty famously opened Batty's Grand National Hippodrome in Kensington Gardens to cash in the audiences from the Crystal Palace Exhibition, where he offered feats of theatre and equestrianism.

William Batty died in 1868 in London, aged 67.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Circus Friends Association Collection

Reference code: NFA0122
Scope and Contents

This collection consists of a large library of books and journals, as well as archival material including posters, programmes, photographs, films, handbills, research material, scrapbooks, original artwork and many other items of ephemera relating to British, Irish and European circuses

Dates: 1795 - 2020

Early Circus Programmes, c1800 - 1999

Reference code: 178K43.1-28
Scope and Contents

Early British circus and variety programmes including Astley's, Batty's and Lord George Sanger's circus.

Dates: c1800 - 1999

Programmes, c1800 - 2019

Reference code: 178K43
Scope and Contents

A collection of mainly British and international circus programmes and some variety and music hall programmes containing circus acts.

Dates: c1800 - 2019