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The small restaurant adjoining the Washington is now trading as “Willmore’s”– the name of the family who operated Penarth’s cinemas.
The appearance of this cinema is illustrated in the original plans (Archive) and in a newspaper photo taken some time after closure, showing little had changed in 50 years.
Was this the last large one-screen cinema built for ABC? ( Rank had recently built a new Odeon ,similar in size, in Swansea,recently demolished after many years as a night-club.)
The subdivision of large cinemas seemed to begin soon afterwards, initially into two with early ABC examples retaining large screens and capacities (e.g.Leicester and Shaftesbury Avenue).
September 2017. The building remains vacant and appears to still be available for rent/sale but would need considerable investment for any new use.
Capacities have been substantially reduced(by more than half) after installing luxury seating.
Only one floor of the original cinema is now in use, with 7 screens.Competition from the re-opened cinema that was formerly the Capitol Odeon which had been closed for some years has brought about a reduced ticket price at Vue, Still offers top quality digital projection and sound. Many parts of the building have been re-configured providing different leisure facilities, though there is current major rebuilding work in the surrounding area (2017)
Another visit to the Savoy in May 2017 , now a stylish “boutique” cinema offering quality presentation and facilities,deservedly popular with local residents and attracting large audiences; created within the existing building but retaining and restoring many original features of the frontage.
Local reports have detailed the reasons for the closure of the garage on the site of the Windsor Kinema and given a some details of the Windsor and the way the building was altered for its new use.It is currently empty and has revealed some of the ceiling of the Kinema still exists and one report includes a good exterior photo of the Windsor Kinema. A search for “Windsor Garage Penarth” will locate the relevant articles,relating to Monty Smith (The original garage proprietor)
Penarth Library have a small display (December 2015) of memorabilia of Penarth’s cinemas including photographs and press cuttings also featuring the Willmore Brothers first silent cinema,prior to the construction of the Windsor Kinema.Also details of the “Regal” in the Paget Rooms in the 1930’s until the premises were required for wartime uses.
It is understood that the research by a member of the library staff will be retained after te display is replaced.
Opening again after refurbishment in April 2015 with,according to press report,laser projection in 4 of the 5 screens,two with 3D,seating imported from the USA,and a very competitive ticket price.
No doubt additional details will become available soon.
Converted into a music venue using the Globe name.
Destroyed by fire 23 Feb 2015.
Further modification and decoration of the building has now taken place ( following the closure of Blockbuster).
Thanks to clarkey for this confirmation of details.Perhaps the main page for the Coliseum can now be updated?
Gaumont/Empire site now occupied by Matalan.
Only part of the new entrance built in 1933,now the access to the dance/martial arts studio added after the cinema closed was behind a wall of the police station.Most of the building was sufficiently open to have been painted white at the same time as the street side a few years ago,but can now be seen as demolition progresses but will be hidden again as the new flats are built.
The far side of the building shown above closely resembles the Windsor Kinema as built in 1914, on the site of a hall which was operated for a short time as a cinema by the Willmore Brothers. The old hall’s several previous uses are described in one of the “Penarth Walks” leaflets published locally some years ago, which also mentions the other garage nearer to The Dingle.
April 2014, 2D digital and much improved sound system.Another tiny audience on the day of my visit, and “For Sale” board still on the building.
The building which replaced the Queens Cinema also used the site of the Evans shop.The current occupiers , Specsavers, recently moved from one shop unit into the other (on the cinema foyer site).
No. 94, also visible in the picture became part of the adjoining bank, but when the Cardiff Cinema opened there was also a small entertainment hall, called the Queens Hall advertised at that address.
Recently published photographs reveal that when the Panopticon became the Pavilion the original small entrance was still in use.The enlarged foyer and canopy , as restored for the now closed pub,was added shortly afterwards.
In 2013 plans to adapt the building for a new use were proposed.
The art gallery appears to have re-located to the newly refurbished Pier Pavilion which also includes a totally new 68 seat digital cinema.(Listed separately)
The Washington building will continue as a cafe and Tesco store with another retail unit still available.
In October 2013 the “Former Riva Bingo Hall” (sic) is to be sold by auction. The auction details suggest it as a development site .
A press advert in late 1913 shows afternoon patrons were treated to a free tea!
Attempts to find a picture of the Ninian Palace as originally built have so far failed. The plans do not contain a front elevation but suggest it might have been similar to other smaller cinemas being built at the same time.The concrete frontage with metal window frames almost certainly dates from the repairs after the fire in 1949.