24-26 Prince's Drive,
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The Princess Picture Theatre opened in October 1922. Initially seating was on one floor. In 1932, a balcony was added to bring the seating capacity up to 800 and the cinema gained a new facade which was in a Neo-Egyptian style. The interior was given an Art deco style. The proscenium opening was 32 feet wide and the stage was 30 feet deep.
It was operated throughout its life as an independent cinema, first by Messrs Kenyon & Jeffrey and from 1976 by the small Hutchinson Leisure Ltd. chain.
It closed in July 1981 and was converted into a bingo club which continued until closure on 30th August 1997. By that time the building was owned by Apollo Leisure Ltd., who talked about converting the balcony into a cinema, but that never happened. The building was sold to the J.D. Wetherspoon chain of pubs and was renovated to its original appearance, minus the cinema seats of course. The pub opened in September 1998 and was named ‘The Picture House’.
The former Princess Cinema is a Grade II listed building.
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