Cameo Cinema

High Street,
Bargoed, CF81

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Jackson Withers Circuits

Previous Names: Palace Cinema

Nearby Theaters

Cameo Cinema

Built prior to World War I, the Bargoed Palace had seating all on a single level. The Palace Cinema was located across the street from the New Hall Cinema.

It was closed in the mid-1960’s, but had re-opened in around 1974 as the Cameo Cinema. The Cameo Cinema was still open in 1980.

Contributed by TERRY DIPPLE

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

Jeffrey Morris
Jeffrey Morris on July 28, 2011 at 11:11 am

The Palace opened on the 10th November 1910. Although a popular cinema the Palace closed as a cinema during the mid to late 1960s and offered bingo 7 days a week. The Palace and the Hanbury were both operated by the Jackson Wither’s circuit, it is unknown as to why the Palace was chosen for bingo rather than the Hanbury. In comparison the Hanbury was a more modern venue and this might have influenced the Jackson Wither’s circuit’s decision to convert the Palace for use as a bingo hall on a full time basis.

Although a number of cinemas continued to operate through the valleys during the seventies they struggled. The Jackson Wither’s circuit was no exception. The circuit made the decision to convert the nearby Hanbury cinema to bingo. The reasons for this are unclear as the Palace was at that time trading as a bingo club and had been successful.

During the early seventies Brian Bull acquired the former Palace cinema, possibly from the Rank Organisation who had bought the entire Jackson Wither’s circuit. Brian Bull developed the Palace into a new cinema and renamed it as the Cameo cinema with new seating on one level. The newly refurbished auditorium was a comfortable venue as a cinema.

The Cameo opened on the 26th December 1973 and was an instant success. The cinema continued to function through the early eighties. I believe it closed during the eighties although I’m not entirely sure exactly when or why it closed.

Brian Bull owned the Cameo and the Hanbury. During the 90’s Brian planned to reopen the former Hanbury cinema, some work had been carried out on the former cinema with a view of opening as a full time cinema, for unknown reasons this never happened. Brian experienced some difficulties with the local authority and this might have contributed to his decision not to proceed with the venture.

In 1994 the Cameo lease was advertised in Screen International.

Andrew69 on January 14, 2014 at 10:00 pm

I remember my father taking me to the Cameo cinema in Bargoed in the mid 1970’s to see Peter Pan, and he took me there again to see the 1976 remake of King Kong. I also remember him taking me to see ‘'War games’‘ staring Matthew Broderick, that may have been the last time he took me. I also saw Superman III there and the first three Star wars films, James Bond ’‘Never say never’‘ and ’‘Octopussy’‘ Batman returns in 1992. The cinema most certainly closed around this time as I have home movie footage of it being demolished in July 1994, sad to see it go, good memories.

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