Odeon Manchester

Oxford Street,
Manchester, M1 4PL

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Showing 1 - 25 of 43 comments

lady on August 8, 2016 at 12:07 pm

I have just signed into this site ..I am trying to gather information re my late great – grandfather. William Millward. I’m going back to 1921 .he was the owner of the Seal Film company & took Jessica’s first prayer into a successful silent movie ..Enid Sharpies played piano for the silents..I am told he owned cinemas in the UK.Is there anyone that maybe able to furnish me with more details ..Thank you kindly .

jajo on December 25, 2013 at 7:59 am

Given the scary ceiling collapse at the Apollo in London, does anyone remember a similar ceiling collapse at the Manchester Odeon during a screening of Return of the Pink Panther? Must have been around 1975 I was 12 years old and remember the terrible cracking sound, as described now in the Apollo, thinking there was something wrong with the soundtrack, and the the plaster falling down above and behind me. Fortunately nobody was injured, but there was a lot of dust and panic. My older brother made the most of it – he got our money back and went for a pizza!

john Wojowski
john Wojowski on September 21, 2013 at 3:30 pm

Ammendment: In June I wrote that demolition had started. As it turned out I noticed two weeks later that they hadn’t started demolition at all, they took down the canopy outside and screened of the front of the building with advertising hoarded for the new building that will replace it. Apparently the, the new owners will not start demolition untill they have sold all the spaced for the proposed office block. That’s the story as far as I understand. Will post a photo of how it looks now.

john Wojowski
john Wojowski on June 25, 2013 at 3:35 am

As of this day demolition crew is moving in now, shame that this has happened but with no active group to save this once finest Paramount Theatre, it was only a matter of time. Great loss and manchester’s last remaining original cinema building in the city will be gone in a couple of months or so.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 27, 2010 at 11:38 am

Vintage photographs of the Paramount/Odeon, and its Wurlitzer organ console:

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 3, 2010 at 11:24 am

A vintage street scene of Oxford Street in the early-1930’s, showing the recently opened Paramount Theatre:
View link

laurajade18 on February 12, 2010 at 11:54 am

I never had the chance to go into the Oxford Road Odeon, unfortunately, however, i used to walk past it nearly every day whilst i was at Salford Uni. I used to look up at it and think how sad it was that it was boarded up. I ended up doing a little research and reading up about the Gaumont, and the Oxford Picture House (now mcDonald’s) and the countless cinemas along that road, and became absolutely fascinated. It’s funny because whilst people do kick up a fuss at other cinemas closing, this one always seems to keep people talking, whether it’s because of the demolition rumours i don’t know.

I even wrote an article in the student paper, I was that incensed and focused on getting the place re-opened – in the article i interviewed Aidan O'Rourke (from 3D fan’s link!) I’m guessing the Covenant and the details about the interior ‘trashing’ came as a pretty huge blow to him, he was a big campaigner for saving the building and preventing it’s possible faceless replacement.

Anyone interested in this cinema should read about the history of entertainment and cinema along the Oxford Road/Peter Street Axis. It goes back well over 100 years, and it’s really sad, with the exception of the Cornerhouse the end of the Odeon brings the end of that fantastic piece of history. It was Manchester’s most prestigious and luxiourious cinema, it survived world war II’s blitz, it was one of the very few Odeon cinemas which didn’t adopt their unique and now classic architecture, it showed the first full length technicolour movie. It is virtually the last of the manchester picture houses, it outlived pretty much every other in the city, the Gaumont, the Picadilly Picture House, The Deansgate Picture House, The Grosvenor, The New Oxford, The Regal… which is a great feat in itself.

I’m so passionate about this one, and I never even got to step foot in it! It will be such a sad day when the knock it down.

sg1985 on November 26, 2009 at 12:14 am

Still a little sad this cinema shut down, neither the amc or the filmworks live up to the atmosphere this old place had, I saw so many films there over the years, particular highlights were preview screenings of Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers and The Return Of The King, both full houses and a great atmosphere.

woody on June 30, 2009 at 10:02 am

a scan of the reopening brochure cover from 1992 when it reopened with 7 screens

AdoraKiaOra on June 16, 2009 at 5:13 pm

Why place a covenant to prevent future entertainment in the building when the building was built solely for that purpose??

drguywalker on February 20, 2009 at 2:54 am

Quite an emotional tone to this one! Isn’t it funny, but Paramount in the 1930’s were also ‘greedy, faceless, selfish, 'b***ards’, and they were American imposters too. At the time there were quite a few people (notably architectural critics like the ones everyone seems to aspire to be on this website) who thought it crass, gaudy, preposterous, vulger etc etc etc. One thing everyone could agree on, though, was that the Paramount was modern. And all around, the the old music halls and live-theatres died a death – imagine if web forums existed in the 30’s!!!

Ian on November 10, 2008 at 4:00 pm

I have to say I largely agree with the outcome although this has been brought about by iniquities that should not exist.

1) the interior was deliberately trashed before English Heritage could view the Odeon. Such acts of vandalism should be made legally reversible at the cost of the owner if EH decide that prior to the destruction it was listable. Furthermore EH should have the right to thoroughly inspect a building (including looking behind partition walls and above ceilings causing potential damage to existing fittings) before coming to a conclusion.

2) if organisations such as Odeon’s owners place a covenant on a building to prevent a specific use in the future then a portion of the sale price should be required to be donated to other similar enterprises in the area. So say a 20% levy on this development purchase price should be made available to aid cinema preservation in the area. Cutting into their profits is the only way to stop restrictive practises. At least if one building is lost, then another might be saved.

3) the dereliction and sub-division it itself is not insurmountable. I commented recently on the Berkhamsted Rex which was in a far worse state than the Odeon, but where there was a will (much opposed) to save it. There is no such desire in Manchester to save the Odeon

Cinefan on November 10, 2008 at 11:34 am

Ummm.. Not to bring any naysayers forward buuut…

View link

You should read this. He (The author of the article) is true. The building can’t be saved. Even if it is saved, ODEON slapped a Conveant on the site, preventing its use as an entertainment venue. Besides, the English Heritage still won’t budge to list the building.

smoothie on June 15, 2008 at 2:36 pm

1970’s photograph here. Might be replicated elsewhere, but on main page of www.oldsalford.co.uk

Ian on April 25, 2008 at 3:46 am

An April 2008 view here:–

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smoothie on March 9, 2008 at 3:33 am

p.s. I hope Manchester members don’t get squeamish about a Brummie rummaging around in their local history. I was a Manchester/Stockport ratepayer between 1986 and 1996 LOL.

Correction to previous comment:Date should read March 4,2008.

smoothie on March 9, 2008 at 3:30 am

Incidentally,everyone! That link I put up on Mar 2004,2008 has about a dozen timeless photos of the Odeon.You can get to the rest via that lead url address,BUT you may need me to guide you through it. Apparently Manchester City council’s interest in Heritage and History stretches only to parking that site in amongst teacher’s pay rises and overdue books from the library.

woody on March 4, 2008 at 8:47 am

any news on the demolition date yet?

smoothie on March 4, 2008 at 4:26 am

Do we get smiley icons here on Cinematreasures I wonder?

Ian on March 4, 2008 at 3:32 am

A 1975 shot here:

View link

jrhine on February 22, 2008 at 12:27 pm

The Odeon organ was a 4/20 Wurlitzer.

Ian on December 19, 2007 at 11:49 am

A couple more vintage shots of the Odeon from 1987 here:–

View link

View link

Ian on December 14, 2007 at 4:56 am

A night view of the shuttered building in November 2007 here:–

View link

HowardBHaas on June 4, 2007 at 11:30 am

Are there interior photos (before the trashing)? I’d especially like to see the crush bar mentioned above with 1930’s feel, but eager to see the rest.