Oxford Palace Cinema
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The Oxford Hall, to give it its original name, was designed by Mr B. Nelson of Llandudno as an extension to the house and studios of John Jamblin, a successful photographer. The hall, a venue for meetings and concerts and capable of seating 600 people occupied the upper floor with shops taking up the ground floor. The entrance to the hall was at the centre of the shopping arcade. The shops were not immediately successful and Jamblin was soon in severe financial difficulty and reduced to sending out a printed ‘begging letter’ to prevent "He and his wife spending the rest of their lives in the workhouse." It is said that the then Prime Minister W.E. Gladstone donated 5 GB Pounds to his rescue fund.
In the 1920’s the hall was taken as a cinema by Coast Cinemas Ltd. A pianist, Hilda Williams, known locally as ‘Hilda Pictures’ was employed to accompany the silent films. The cinema successfully converted to sound in 1930, when a Kamm sound system was installed. Shows were continuous with prices of 8d to 2/–. Pictures and variety formed the progamming in the 1930’s. The stage was 21 feet deep, and there were two dressing rooms. A cafe provided additional revenue.
The end came in 1937 when the Crescent Cinema was opened nearby and the venue then went into other uses, today it is used as a cafe. The shops have had various uses over time including grocers, ironmongers, tobaconists, Gas Board showrooms and even Council Offices.
The venue still stands today.
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