62 Castle Street,
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The Granada Theatre was built for and operated the Granada chain of cinemas, opening on 8th January 1930 with a seating capacity of 1,717. The opening film was “The Last of Mrs Cheyney” starring Norma Shearer. The architect was Cecil Masey with Granada’s favoured interior designer Theodore Komisarkevsky responsible for the decorations, this theatre being his first full project.
The foyer was built in an 18th Century French style with marble staircase leading to the circle with chandeliers and Venetian mirrors. The auditorium had a Spanish Moorish theme and was very ornate. The Granada Theatre had a full working stage, a 35 feet wide proscenium and a Christie 3Manual organ with lift in the orchestra pit. On 19th June 1935, Granada sold the cinema to Associated British Cinemas(ABC) chain, but it was not renamed ABC until April 1960, and was forever known to local people as the Granada. The Christie organ was removed in 1960, being bought later by an organ enthusiast.
With the decline in film going in 1970 it was modernised into a ‘Luxury Lounge’ cinema using only the stalls area with 610 seats, closing off the circle, reopening on 6th July 1970. The ABC closed as a cinema on 30th October 1982 and was converted into ‘Images’ Night Club. This too has closed and in 2007 the building was bought by the Wetherspoons chain for conversion into a pub, but 12 months on in 2008, work has yet to start.
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