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This cinema seems to be older than stated above. Manchester Libraries have a photo of the exterior from 1920:
and one of the interior, also 1920:
Plus two from 1968 when it was showing ‘Smashing Time’:
In December 2006 it will 25th years since the Royalty closed. For the anniversary I am putting together a new version of the documentary, which will have better picture quality and sound, thanks to digital editing and a couple of corrections are necessary. The website will be up by then. Andy if you get in touch I’ll be happy to let you, Steve and Michael have a copy on DVD. The best way to contact me is via my website at geoffstafford.com.
I have very happy memories of the the time I spent at the Royalty with the staff including Mabel. They were a lovely group of people.
Photographs and further information about the ABC television years:
The usherette and ticket office person was Mabel Chappelhowe. She worked there from the 1950’s until the final night in December 1981 and she appears in my video documentary which was filmed in the final few weeks of 1981.
In early 1982 I met with some of the staff, including Mrs Eastlake the former Manager and John Tessa the former projectionist. We met outside the Royalty building and we went inside to take a look. I remember how upset they were when they saw all the vandalism. The screen was ripped, the projectors were smashed up and there was graffiti on the walls.
They said they didn’t feel safe being in there. So we left. Up until then we had hoped the cinema might reopen. But that was the day when it became clear to all of us that it never would.
Also, quite some time before demolition work started, the building was set on fire damaging the stalls foyer area. I think that probably happened in 1983.