Gaumont Birmingham

Colmore Circus, Steelhouse Lane,
Birmingham, B4 6AR

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Showing 1 - 25 of 28 comments

Wurlitzer420
Wurlitzer420 on December 6, 2015 at 12:50 pm

The organ was remmoved to the abbey hall Abingdon. Now it will be installed by the Penistone cinema organ trust in Barnsley. It will be added to several other cinema organs, this makinng it the largest Compon theatre organ in the world

Robbie25646
Robbie25646 on September 9, 2012 at 5:03 am

I used to go regularly in the id 1950s as a child, Wonderful memories of a great theatre.

Johncine
Johncine on November 7, 2011 at 2:55 am

June 15th 1980 is a day long-remembered. THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK premiered it’s run here. Two months before, I saw THE BLACK HOLE on opening day here as well and was amongst the audience blown away by the EMPIRE teaser trailer. I also saw STAR WARS / EMPIRE double bill, DRAGONSLAYER and ROBIN HOOD on reissue. A big-screen sadly missed now, but one of my favourite places of all time. ROCKY II replaced THE BLACK HOLE after three weeks.

Mike_Blakemore
Mike_Blakemore on October 19, 2011 at 12:33 pm

I have load a picture of the original Stage… Hope enjoy

chrisjones
chrisjones on May 6, 2009 at 8:18 am

For a 12 year old kid just getting into cinema, this cinema could not be matched. I remember seeing ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ 8 times on that huge screen. It had an exclusive presentation there before going on general release in the Midlands. Great memories.

keiths
keiths on February 19, 2009 at 11:06 am

I saw ‘Close Encounters’ at the Gaumont on its first release, and ‘boy’ was that screen big!!

smoothie
smoothie on March 21, 2008 at 2:11 pm

Ken,according to the CT search index, the Odeon,Queensway ain’t listed. Or is it me?

Did you notice on the photo that the Scala had become the “Cala” as the downward “S” had dropped off! I can think of some pubs locally that had that happen, but the resulting name got a bit risque. LOL

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on March 21, 2008 at 9:34 am

Smoothie; Thanks for that great photo of the Scala Superama/Odeon Queensway. You are allowed to post it at the Odeon Queensway, Birmingham page here:
/theaters/22098/

smoothie
smoothie on March 21, 2008 at 9:19 am

Scala Superama(later Odeon,Queensway) 1966 photo from one of my local history sites here:– http://www.pbase.com/beppuu/image/92164033

I haven’t forgotten about making up a profile about this one, nor some of the many West Midlands' theatres i’ve promised to do.I’ll find a space in my busy existence as soon as possible!

smoothie
smoothie on February 17, 2008 at 2:06 am

Whoa! I’ve found this all-colour thingy from 1965: http://www.pbase.com/beppuu/image/92164027/
It’s not a Cinerama movie(on the largest screen then in Europe) but Julie Andrews in her 3 year marathon at this Cinerama house in “The Sound of Money”(quote:Pauline Kael).SuperCOLOURfragilistic eh?
I’ll sign autographs later for discovering this one LOL

smoothie
smoothie on January 23, 2008 at 10:09 am

Everyone-i’ve started a marathon info exercise for everyone on the Odeon (New St) Birmingham page, which spills over into details about the Gaumont and-shortly-the Scala Superama/Odeon Queensway/Compton nudie movie emporium.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on November 16, 2007 at 3:31 am

Nicky; I have now added the two buildings which became the Odeon Queensway:
/theaters/22098/
/theaters/22099/

NickyCampbell
NickyCampbell on November 15, 2007 at 5:19 pm

Hi there, i’m looking for information on the old Odeon cinema on Queensway, I work at the recently (last year)opened Oceana Nightclub (which used to be Zanzibar), and below it is an old Odeon, which, with a torch, have been down to a couple of times and I was amazed by it, i saw where the screen and seats used to be, the projection and sound room, hotdog stand (still with the signs). But I cannot find any history information or photos of it when it was open. I read that “projcampbell” used to work there so if you or anyone has any info they can give me that would be fantastic!!!

kevinp
kevinp on April 30, 2007 at 9:30 pm

Paul , and others in their quest, I am positive there was a book issued about 6 years ago…. I have to try and trackitdown at home (hidden somewhere in a 100 books/booklets and about 300 post-cards on cinemas. !)

However, you may well want to check out ( and join !) The Mercia Cinema Society, which, funnily enough was started by 4 people in Birmingham, but covers all the UK and further afield

http://www.merciacinema.org.uk/index.htm

also, check out The CTA, Cinema Theatre Association

best

Kev P

BRIANCAMPBELL
BRIANCAMPBELL on January 7, 2006 at 11:11 am

Yes please Grechenka would love piccys.Please email them to .The Savoy,Breedon Cross,Kings Norton in 1946 was a 950 seater.Owned by Parry Amalgamations Ltd,Sheepcote Street.BTH equipment with a 25ft proscenium.Many thanks.Brian.

Grechenka
Grechenka on January 7, 2006 at 1:51 am

Brian, Many, many thanks for your email. Some six or more months ago I asked if anyone had a photograph of the Kings Norton Cinema (known as the ‘KN’) – but without response. However, coincidenatally, one arrived this morning from the Kings Norton Historical Society. Additionally, they sent a photograph of the ‘Savoy’ (another local cinema, but known as the ‘fleapit’). Should you wish me to forward these photographs to you, please let me know. Kindest, Grechenka.

BRIANCAMPBELL
BRIANCAMPBELL on January 6, 2006 at 8:47 am

Hi Grechenka,
Yes must be 10-15 years at least since Odeon Queensway closed.The Kings Norton Cinema as of 1946 used Western Electric equipment.Proprietors Kings Norton Picture House Co.Ltd The Green.Seating capacity 1,142. Ticket prices from 10d to 2s 3d.Shows continuous dailey. This cinema was fitted with Ardente deaf aids. Hope that is some use to you.Regards, Brian.

Grechenka
Grechenka on January 6, 2006 at 6:34 am

I noticed your posting re: firstly the Odeon, Queensway. I was In Birmingham in September and was amazed the place has the ‘For Sale’ or ‘To Let’ signs still up. How long is it now since it closed – got to be 10 years? The book you mention, I would love any information you may have on the ‘King’s Norton Cinema'on the outskirts of Birmingham. A large cinema, now demolished, I think it was part of the Clifton Cinemas chain.

BRIANCAMPBELL
BRIANCAMPBELL on January 6, 2006 at 2:52 am

With ref to Paul Smith and Chris Perman’s enquiries re cinema’s in Birmingham, I have in my possession a copy of KINEMATOGRAPH YEAR BOOK 1946.
Besides other theatre information this book lists all cinema’s in the British Isles in operation that year with seating capacities,proprieters,address,ticket prices and type of projection system for most of them.(There were 100 in Brum).
If of any use please email me.

BRIANCAMPBELL
BRIANCAMPBELL on January 3, 2006 at 10:00 am

I worked part time as projectionist at the Queensway (then the Odeon Queensway) in 1972. Projection then was standard frontal using two 70mm Itallian Victoria projectors. The suite was state of art with a separate room with full controls to sit down and run a show.
A few doors away there was a risque cine club, under same ownership which used rear projection,three mirrors as I recall, two Victoria’s, 35mm.

pitbull
pitbull on December 26, 2005 at 5:12 am

With reference to rear projection, as mentioned by JdEspiney. The Queensway at Holloway Head also had rear projection. I’m not sure if that was when it was the Scala, but it certainly did at some time.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on September 11, 2005 at 4:52 am

A 1970 exterior photograph of the Gaumont, Birmingham here:
View link

michaelhealy
michaelhealy on August 27, 2005 at 10:09 pm

The Opera House in Coventry had rear projection!

Michael Healy, Melbourne, Australia

JdEspiney
JdEspiney on July 30, 2005 at 9:59 am

I have posted some information I have about the reopening of the Electra cinema in Station Street as I was 2nd operator there in 1940-1941 when it was The Tatler but I also was at The News Theatre High Street ( the only cinema in the Midlands with a scintillating sign) and also worked as relief at the Bristol Cinema,Luxor Balsall Heath,Moseley Picture House, The Bordesley Palace and the Waldorf. Incidently the only cinema in the Midlands with rear projection was the Astoria in Aston. I knew many of the staff at various cinemas, I suppose now dead and gone but if anyone has any questions I would be glad to try and help

11aallison
11aallison on February 1, 2004 at 12:31 am

Hi Chris,
Thanks for your response. Please contact me on .uk and perhaps we can swap notes. I have spent some time checking out all the maps that I have of Birmingham [from c1900 – 1950] to see which buildings have been identified as theatres and cinemas. I have contacted Carl Chinn about this Encyclopaedia project but have not received a reply, however Dr Chris Upton at Newman College has been very supportive and he may have a reference source.
Many thanks,
Paul Smith