Savoy Cinema

Russell Street,
Kettering, NN16

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Savoy Cinema

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Savoy Cinema opened as a dual purpose cinema and theatre on 21st May 1938 with Spencer Tracey in “The Big City” plus a variety show on stage. It was erected on the same site as the Coliseum Theatre which opened in 1910 but housed in a building dating from 1903. In 1937 it burned to the ground.

The Savoy Cinema was a handsome replacement with 1,150 seats in the stalls and circle. There was a full stage with a flytower, and live performances were often presented, sometimes with a resident theatre company, for example the Northampton Repertory Company presented regular seasons here between 1949 and 1951. The stage was 43 feet wide, 23 feet deep and had a 60 feet high flytower. Backstage there were seven dressing rooms and a band room.

The facade was plain, but solid, and was outlined in neon. The interior was decorated with Grecian murals, had concealled lighting and elaborated ventilation grills down the sides and above the rectangular proscenium. It was a wide and reletively shallow house, which must have given it excellent sightlines. It was taken over by the Clifton Cinemas circuit on 25th Auguat 1944.

In 1968 the circle was split off and extended forward as a smaller cinema seating 485, called the Studio, whilst bingo took over the stalls and stage area. In 1973 this screen was split into two, seating 160 and 140 and known as Studio 1 & 2. After a short closure in 1986 they were re-opened as an independent and were renamed Ohio Cinema, which finally closed in 1997 after an Odeon Multiplex arrived in town.

Vandalised and empty, the former Savoy Cinema was slated for demolition and replacement with flats. The derelict cinema was badly damaged in an arson attack which took place in the early morning of 16th September 2011. It was demolished in June 2014.

Contributed by Ian Grundy

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on August 20, 2008 at 8:17 am

Photographed awaiting demolition in February 2005:
http://flickr.com/photos/53797362@N00/41559631/

Biffaskin
Biffaskin on February 28, 2012 at 11:52 am

Last went past the Savoy in June 2011. Still boarded up and awaiting it’s fate… presumably the downturn in the building sector has saved it… for now….

Dexterror
Dexterror on August 28, 2013 at 10:45 am

I walked pass this cinema on my post round, so as of today its still standing!

djms3
djms3 on June 13, 2014 at 5:55 am

The workers have actually started to knock this down now.

Mike_Blakemore
Mike_Blakemore on June 13, 2014 at 7:14 am

Hmm That is very sad news of one of Our old Theatres..

Dexterror
Dexterror on June 15, 2014 at 1:44 pm

That’s very sad news, although I don’t know how its managed to stay there empty for over 14 years now?

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