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Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: New Palladium Cinema, Palladium Cinema, Gaumont
Opening on 1st October 1930, this was a very lavish replacement of the New Palladium Cinema which had been destroyed by fire. This New Palladium Cinema was designed by W. E. Trent and Ernest F. Tulley for Gaumont British Theatres, retaining the original façade, but on an enlarged site. It was situated in fashionable Lord Street and had formerly been a noted cine-variety theatre, and a stage was included in the New Palladium Cinema, but this was swiftly dis-used and film fare was the norm.
There were approximately 700-seats in the balcony and 1,500-seats in the stalls. Decoration was horizontal bands of blue green and red, separated by silver lines above a polished walnut dado. Lighting was mainly indirect, but boosted by a series of Art Deco style chandeliers in the ceiling. A Compton 3Manual/10Rank organ was installed. The proscenium was 52ft wide and the stage 30 feet deep. There was also a large restaurant.
The ‘New’ was dropped from the re-opening name of New Palladium and later, in 1950, it was renamed Gaumont. In 1962 it was renamed Odeon. The Rank Organisation closed the Odeon on 28th November 1979 with “Confessions of a Pop Performer” and “A Game For Vultures”.
After a long decline, the supermarket chain Sainsbury’s made an offer for the site, and despite it’s Listed building status and the fact that it was in a Conservation Area, permission was granted to demolish and the Odeon was reduced to rubble in the summer of 1980.
How much would it have taken to at least incorporate the supremely elegant façade into the shop?
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