Gaumont Stratford

4 Tramway Avenue,
London, E15 4PG

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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 “Suprise 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.

Contributed by KenRoe

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

woody
woody on January 28, 2008 at 6:04 am

sad photo – how not to treat a building
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Ken Roe
Ken Roe on April 9, 2009 at 7:44 am

A wonderful set of vintage photographs of the Gaumont:
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Photographed in 1987, three years before demolition:
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AdoraKiaOra
AdoraKiaOra on April 9, 2009 at 2:48 pm

In the 1980s I used to go past this facade almost daily and always thought how sad it looked.
I had no idea that such a palace sat behind!
Wow!
Was the auditorium still there up until demolition or was it long gone during all its different uses?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on April 9, 2009 at 3:13 pm

Ian;The entire building remained until demolition, but I am not sure how much of the internal decorative details remained when it became a factory.

JR
JR on December 23, 2013 at 3:23 am

I remember going to this movie theatre In the 1950’s . Such an amazing place. Marbled foyer area when you went in, attendants in uniform, tropical fish tanks at the sides of the foyer and a display on show that related to the movie. This was when you had to wait in a queue to get in, and when you did stand on the side to wait for a seat, You sometimes started watching part way through then watch from the beginning until you got to the part you started watching! Then you left to give up the seat to someone else.

The screen was BIG. The movies were BIG and the actors were Tall. Charlton Heston, Gregory Peck, Sophia Loren and Anita Eckberg.

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