43 Coney Street,
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Previously operated by: Gaumont-British-Picture Corp., Ltd., Provincial Cinematograph Theatres Ltd., Rank Organisation
Architects: Albert Winspear
Firms: Naylor & Sale
The building on Coney Street was originally built in the Victorian era as a Doctor’s home and surgery. The ground floor was eventually made into a grocer’s shop. In 1914, work began to build the auditorium of the Picture House in the garden at the rear of the premises. The former grocer’s shop became the entrance and foyer, and the upstairs rooms were converted into a Wedgewood Tea Room and an Oak Lounge Cafe.
The Picture House was opened on 12th April 1915 with “When East Meets West”. Designed by PCT’s ‘in-house’ architect Naylor & Sale, the auditorium had a barrel vaulted ceiling. The Picture House was taken over by the Provincial Cinematograph Theatres(PCT) chain in 1919. PCT were taken over by the Gaumont British Theatres chain in February 1929.
The Picture House was closed by Circuit Management Association(the Rank Organisation) on 16th March 1955 with Stanley Baker in “Prize of Gold”. The building was demolished and the adjacent Woolworth’s store expanded onto the site. Since the demise of Woolworth’s in 2008, the premises have been taken over by Boots Chemists.
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The Picture House an be partially seen in this photo taken sometime in the 1930’s, and a picture of soldiers marching into the theatre in 1937 can be seen here.