4 Tramway Avenue,
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Architects: George Coles
Previous Names: Broadway Super Cinema & Variety Theatre
Located in the east London district of Stratford. Opened as the Broadway Super Cinema on 22nd December 1927 with Wallace Beery starring in “Casey at the Bat” and the main feature was “Mother Machree” starring Victor McGlagen plus on stage were variety acts, the entire programme was accompanied by the Broadway Symphony Orchestra and the Wurlitzer 2 Manual/8 Rank theatre organ.
The Broadway Super Cinema was a project of Hyams & Gale who had a small circuit of cinemas and were expanding rapidly, by building massive cinemas in London’s inner city suburbs. Not long after opening they were taken over by Gaumont British Cinemas, the Broadway Super Cinema was taken over in March 1928, but it was not until 28th November 1949 when it was re-named Gaumont Theatre.
The theatre was damaged by bombing first in September 1940, then while repairs were being carried out it was hit again by a high explosive bomb on 12th October 1940. A second bomb fell on the nearby Empire Theatre which was wrecked. The Broadway re-opened on 4th August 1941.
The Rank Organisation closed the Gaumont on 26th November 1960 with Yul Brynner in “Surprise Package” and Frank Sinatra in “The Tender Trap”. Rumours were around that it may be converted into a bowling alley, but in 1961 it was a factory named Arco Rewind Ltd. After the factory closed in October 1977, the foyer only became used as a gym for a few years but when this closed the building was earmarked for demolition and the wreckers moved in early-1990.
Housing now occupies the site.
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