Odeon Barking

22-30 Longbridge Road,
Barking, IG11 8RT

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Odeon Barking

Located in Barking, Essex, today a district in the east of Greater London. The Rio Cinema opened on 17th August 1935 with Lupe Velez in "The Morals of Marcus". Located on a prominent position opposite Barking Railway and Underground station in what is an Eastern district of what is now part of Greater London. It was built for and was operated by the independent circuit Kay’s Ltd (Kessex Cinemas). Facilities in the cinema included a luxurious cafe lounge, and a beauty parlour for patrons. Initially on-stage variety performances were part of the programme and the Rio was equipped with a fully operational stage and dressing rooms.

It was taken over in 1936 by GFC (Eastern Cinemas) and was taken over by Odeon Theatres Ltd chain of Oscar Deutsch from 28th February 1943. It was re-named Odeon from 31st December 1945.

In December 1974 it was converted into a triple-screen cinema, with 846 seating in the former circle screen and 149 & 144 seats in the two mini screens located in the former rear stalls area. Further sub-division into a six-screen cinema was carried out in April 1990.

The Odeon was closed on 10th December 1998 and was demolished in March 2001. A block of residential flats known as ‘The Odeon’ was built on the site.

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on November 14, 2007 at 8:35 pm

The Odeon Barking photographed in 1971:
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Piet_Morant on September 14, 2015 at 12:03 am

I grew up in Plaistow and this used to be our cinema of choice (since it was the closest one to us). So many great memories. The last movie I saw there was Alien Resurrection, a year before it closed.

Movies I saw here (in no particular order):

Bambi, Return to Oz, A View to a Kill, The Aristocats, Jungle Book, The Rescuers, Crocodile Dundee II, Space Camp, Gremlins 2, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Jurassic Park, Super Mario Bros, Die Hard With a Vengeance, Judge Dredd, Batman Forever, Kindergarten Cop, Star Trek: Generations, The Nutty Professor, Willow, Mrs. Doubtfire, Look Who’s Talking, Independence Day, Alien Resurrection

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