242 High Street,
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Picturehouse Cinemas UK (Official)
Operated by: Picturehouse Cinemas UK
Architects: George Coles
Firms: Earle Architects
Functions: Movies (First Run)
Previous Names: Odeon Bromley, Empire Bromley, Cineworld Cinema - Bromley
The Odeon Theatre, Bromley, Kent, was one of the original Oscar Deutsch Odeon Theatres and opened on 21st September 1936 with Max Miller in “Educated Evans”.
Designed by prolific and noted cinema architect George Coles in an Art Deco/Art Moderne style, the narrow frontage on the main High Street consisted of a deeply curved recess which was flanked by rounded wings and an outwardly curving canopy that had the Odeon name sign mounted on top of it. Seating in the auditorium was provided for 1,492; with 1,018 in the stalls and 474 in the circle. The decoration in the auditorium was rather plain and had wavey bands along the side walls.
The Odeon was tripled in April 1976 with the circle extended forward to seat 760 and two smaller screens seating 125 and 116 located in the former rear stalls. In 1988 the Odeon closed for major re-configuration of the screens. The former circle was split into two screens, the front part became Screen 4 and the rear part became Screen 1. The two mini’s in the rear stalls remained as Screens 2 & 3.
All screens were re-furbished in 2001 and the Odeon, Bromley continued to serve as a first run cinema in what today is in reality a location in Southeast outer Greater London.
In 2006 it was taken over by Empire Cinemas Ltd. and re-named Empire. Seating capacities in the screens are: 1. 387, 2. 119, 3. 105 and 4. 215.
In July 2016 it was one of five Empire cinemas taken over by the Cineworld chain. The other four were the Empire Leicester Square, London, Basildon, Hemel Hempstead and Poole. The Cineworld Cinema - Bromley was closed on March 29, 2018. It was taken over by the Picturehouse Cinema chain and two additional screens added. Fully refurbished to the plans of architectural firm Earle Architects, the Picturehouse Bromley re-opened on June 7, 2019 with Emma Thompson in “Late Night” & Sophie Turner in “X-Men:Dark Phoenix”.
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