Camelot Cinema

The Crescent,
Newquay, TR7 1DS

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Camlot cinema, Newquay

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Pavilion first opened in 1912 as a building for general purpose use and shows. In 1919 it became the Pavilion Cinema with a seating capacity of 750. The proscenium opening was 30feet wide.

It was operated by Sound and Movement (a company based in Plymouth) for many years. In the mid-1950’s it was taken over by the A. Jackson Withers circuit and all was going well until June 1968 when the building was gutted by a fire.

It was re-built by the owners and re-opened in June 1969 as the Camelot Cinema. It had a new facade in a ‘modern’ style and a slightly larger seating capacity than the original building. It was equipped to play 70mm films and became the main cinema in the town.

In 1976 it was purchased by the Rank Organisation together with the entire Jackson Withers circuit. Rank soon disposed of the Camelot Cinema and sold it to Messrs Garfield Daniel in 1980 and they operated it in Summer Seasons only. By 1985 it was for sale again and it went to the Goldstar circuit, then to an independent operator Mr N. Whale in 1990. Closed in late-1994 it re-opened to screen the premier of the film "Blue Juice" on 11th August 1995, a film that was made on location in the area. It was then put in ‘mothballs’ hoping for some future use. In 1996 there was talk of re-opening it as a live theatre, but this came to nothing, as raising cash for the project proved too difficult.

The building stood empty for a few more years and recently (by summer 2006) it has been converted into a pub with an Australian theme known as the Walkabout Inn. All traces of it’s cinematic existance have been removed from the interior.

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 5 comments)

Ian
Ian on September 12, 2007 at 5:25 pm

Photo from 1977 here:–

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abcman
abcman on September 30, 2008 at 8:55 am

Saw ‘The Professionals’ here in the summer of 1967 when the Cinema was still called the Pavilion.

keiths
keiths on March 30, 2009 at 10:55 am

It was certainly an unusual looking place as a cinema. Has it retained its exterior appearance?

Biffaskin
Biffaskin on March 3, 2012 at 3:58 pm

I worked at the Camelot for the summer season when Mr Norman Whale operated the cinema, along with the Plaza in Truro. Jurassic Park came out as the blockbuster film, and it was very very very busy every day all summer. Still seated a little over 700 patrons then. Yhe only part of the original Pavilion, was the basement and the two towers either side of the main entrance.

The decor was orange and brown, very 1970s! That said, it was a great cinema, capable of showing 70mm prints, with the screen size to match! Just a real shame that WTW Cornish Cinemas didn’t come in time to save this cinema as well as the Plaza Truro.

DavidSimpson
DavidSimpson on August 21, 2013 at 5:34 am

Despite the date in the camera data, my photograph was taken in July 2013.

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