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Everyman have done the same at the grade II listed former Odeon Barnet with a floating screen in front of the proscenium. The proscenium there is actually a copy of the original,rebuilt slightly forward of it in the 1990s in order to incorporate an additional auditorium.
Great shame none-the-less. There are fewer and fewer cinemas with curtains and tabs etc which greatly reduces the theatrical magic and reveal of the screen.
A campaign to reopen The Castle cinema in June 2016 has just reached its initial fundraising target. The proposal is to open a 60-80 seat audotorium in approximately half of the upper floor, where the original 1913 plasterwork and decorative mouldings above the proscenium arch are visible. The other half will remain a restaurant working with the cinema, while the downstairs former stalls remains a Spar / Eat17 shop and bar. Details here:
Excellent, thanks Joe.
Thanks for the auditorium photo Ken, it was beautiful and shows how wide it was as mentioned by my mum. To my regret, I never went inside this cinema, going to the nearby Barnet Odeon instead. I witnessed part of the demolition of the Gaumont as captured by ‘Dushanka’s sad flickr photo set. What a loss.
The cinema’s owners UCKG had their 2nd application to convert the building into a church (with some community access) REJECTED unanimously by Waltham Forest Council on 18 May 2011. The church plans to appeal, as they did for their original application in 2003.
Meanwhile a charitable building preservation trust called Waltham Forest Cinema Trust' has been established to buy and restore the building as a full time cinema and live events venue.
See www.walthamforestcinematrust.org www.savewalthamstowcinema.org www.mcguffin/info Facebook ‘save our cinema' Twitter 'save our cinema’
Has anyone got any photos of Finchley Gaumont’s auditorium?
On 17th May 2010, 75 years & 2 days since Barnet Odeon first opened, it celebrated it’s birthday with 2 screenings of Hitchcock’s 1935 ‘The 39 Step’s at the opening night admission price of 2p. Staff were dressed in 1930’s uniforms including tunics, peaked caps and white gloves. The cinema’s manager announced to a packed house in screen 1 that the theatre was Odeon’s oldest cinema. I think they own older buildings, but it could well be the chain’s longest operating cinema.
Moorish styling, art deco features, and loads of octagonal shapes abound in this cinema – Edgar Simmon’s finest. Well worth a visit.
Here’s to another 75 years of movie magic at Barnet Odeon!
Long live Barnet Odeon!
UCKG – the church who have owned the cinema since 2003 (and kept it closed since then) have just submitted a new planning application to convert it into a church.
If Waltham Forest Council approve the plans, the borough loses it’s last and greatest ever cinema. Cinema operators including City Screen/Picturehouse want to buy and restore the building (which happens to be on a site used for entertainment since the 1870’s).
Please visit www.mcguffin.info and ‘Save Walthamstow Cinema’ on Facebook to find out what’s happening and how to object to the plans so we can get this beautiful building returned to the nation as a cinema in Hitchcock’s birthplace.