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It is amazing that the interior of this stunning cinema was not listed although the frontage was. The replacement auditoria were good of their kind though – spacious and comfortable. I went to see all the big Paramount releases here in the 70’s and 80’s. Once it was divided further though it lost all it’s identity and became very bland. How sad to see that the spacious foyer has become another ghastly supermarket. Shopping malls and supermarkets seem to have become the new entertainment centres. Consumerism gone mad!
What a fabulous cinema this was! You really did feel that you had entered an underwater cavern especially with the blue/green lighting effects. I visited many times in the early 1970’s when it was showing double bills of mainly horror films. A couple I remember being ‘What’s The Matter With Helen?’(Debbie Reynolds & Shelly Winters) and ‘Blood and Lace’ (Gloria Grahame). The place was always virtually empty but how incredible it was just to sit in such splendour! There were many cinemas in the Victoria area even in the 70’s – The Metropole, The Classic, The Biograph, The News Theatre, now I guess this is the only survivor.
I’m very sorry indeed to hear about the closure of the Whiteladies. I worked in the area for some years in the 1960’s and watched many movies in the comfortable and elegant surroundings of this lovely venue. The marble pillared entrance hall was something to see and the tower is quite a focal point in the Whiteladies Road. I remember going to see ‘The Americanization Of Emily’ (with Julie Andrews) and ‘The Night Walker’ (Barbara Stanwyk & Robert Taylor), the programming was always interesting. I’m glad that the plasterwork will be retained and there will be some sort of restoration but will the members of a health club appreciate any of it? I’m very surprised that it couldn’t have been developed as an ‘art house’ cinema as there is a large student population in Clifton. This area also has museums and art galleries as well as the University. How sad!