Moderne Cinema

713 Wimborne Road, Winton,
Bournemouth, BH9 2AU

Unfavorite 2 people favorited this theater

Additional Info

Architects: Edward G. De Wilde Holding

Styles: Streamline Moderne

Nearby Theaters

Putting the finishing touches to the Auditorium May 2012

The Moderne Cinema opened on 11th October 1935 with John Boles in “Music in the Air” and Denis O'Neil in “Barnacle Bill”. As its name suggests it was designed in a very modernistic style by local architect Edward G. de Wilde Holding and had the added facility of a cafe, which was located in the balcony foyer.

It closed on 25th May 1983 with Peter Sellers in “The Wrong Arm of the Law” and was converted into a bingo club from June 1983 which was initially operated by Granada Bingo.

In the early-1960’s this was a truly beautiful Art Deco cinema with seats that sported a leopard skin print. A girlfriend’s father who was a butcher got free tictets every week, and so we spent many an evening in the rear of the balcony canoodling in the dark. By this period it tended to be a second run theatre and on Sunday evenings would often offer a horror movie double bill. I saw a dreadful film called “The Deadly Mantis” in this cinema. For a suburban off-centre cinema it was pretty big at 1,500 seats. I really loved this cinema, but it was saved and operated as a bingo hall for many years. Sadly, Gala Bingo closed it down in February 2008, a victim of the ‘No Smoking’ ban in public places.

In the Summer of 2008, the Cinema Theatre Association applied to English Heritage for Listed building consent. The application was turned down, due to the fact the building had lost the original stencilling scheme in the auditorium, despite them being impressed with the excellent foyer.

Contributed by Deric Botham

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on December 15, 2006 at 2:34 pm

Some historic details and a couple of small photographs here; (scroll halfway down the page):

webadmin on February 2, 2008 at 11:15 am

Gala Bingo has decided to close its operation at the former Moderne cinema (Feb 2008). To see a number of large photographs of the interior of the building, visit the Winton Forum website at

These were taken to try and preserve its memory.

andysummers on April 30, 2009 at 7:29 am

I was in the Winton area today while doing some shopping and decided to have peek inside to see what is happening with the ole cinema. Its been renovated into church seems like Bingo is out but it could still be modern THX cinema with the right JBL stuff and digital and 35mm projection. Oh, well too late now. The refitting won’t be completed until around 2011.

I took these pictures as it stands today. Oh one more thing! I never saw film at this cinema when it was open the only cinema that I visited in the Winton area was when the Continental showed a double bill of Planet of the Apes around mid late 1970’s. And even that cinema is gone now completely gone!! sigh

View link
View link
View link
View link
View link

andysummers on April 30, 2009 at 7:34 am

One thing I dislike about the bingo hall is the paint work outside! I mean god damn, whew that is brutal! LOL I mean who pained the exterior a bland man?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on April 30, 2009 at 7:41 am

Normally, church use of a former cinema or theatre building is considered a good thing, as the fabric of the building and its decorative scheme tends to be retained and even restored.

Andy, thanks for posting your photographs. It looks like they are gutting the building, which is totally unneccesary. How sad.

dericbotham on December 15, 2009 at 5:26 am

Many heartfelt thanks to everyone who posted these wonderful pictures. This was my most local cinema in the 1960’s. On Sunday nights they usually had a double Horror bill including the Deadly Mantis and the original version of The Thing.

primolux on March 11, 2012 at 11:22 am

I don’t think the seats at the Moderne were originally covered in leopard skin pattern moquette. Photos taken at the opening, show this not to be the case although the carpet throughout the building was of a leopard skin pattern. I have recently removed the maroon vinyl covering from one of the original seats and restored it. They were dark green with silver side castings.

primolux on June 5, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Apart from some initial over enthusism namely the removal of the auditorium side wall fancy plaster work, Bournemouth Community Church have done a really nice job of restoring this old building both inside and out and it’s all been done to a very high standard.Nice to see the original cinema seats have been retained in the circle.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater.