Theatre Royal Cinema

St Thomas Street,
Scarborough, YO11 1DY

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Additional Info

Previous Names: Theatre Royal, Cinema Royal

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A veritable old theatre, the Theatre Royal dated from circa 1733, operated by Thomas Kerrigans company from York. It was rebuilt, in a more permanent style in 1767 and a surviving print shows a theatre very similar to the surviving Georgian Theatre in Richmond, Yorkshire. Having been known as simply the Scarborough Theatre, it gained the Theatre Royal name after a visit from the Prince & Princess of Oldenburg in September 1838.

Given a major makeover in 1896, films were introduced on variety nights and by the early part of the 20th Century formed the entire entertainment some nights. It was occasionally advertised as the Cinema Royal and in 1914 it became the Theatre Royal Cinema.

The building was declared unsafe and forced closure occured on the 8th October 1924. An attempt to reopen the following season failed, and in 1928 an application was made to convert it permanently to a cinema - the application makes clear the internal destruction that had taken place:- All the old floors and galleries had been removed and they were to reconstruct the whole premises in reinforced concrete. The gallery would be self supported on steel staunchions and the roof would be strengthened by steel. The greatest danger of, the big tower, which was constructed of wood, was to be taken down and covered with an ordinary slate roof" The application was denied and the following year the theatre was purchased by the council and demolished to allow for street widening.

Contributed by Ian Grundy
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