Cinecenta & Penthouse Cine Club

Cheapside,
Bradford, BD1

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CineCenta viewed from Forster Square

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Located on Cheapside at Forster Square, this was built within the new Midland House office building as a twin cinema by the Cinecenta chain. The Cinecenta & Penthouse Cine Club opened on 17th April 1969.

Cinecenta screened regular release films in its 260-seat auditorium, and opened with Albert Finney in "Charlie Bubbles". The Penthouse Cine Club screened un-rated sex films in its 190 seat auditorium and opened with the Swedish film "I, A Woman".

The Cinecenta was open to the general public, but the Penthouse Cine Club was a members only cinema.

The Cinecenta chain was taken over by the Leeds based Star Cinemas chain in September 1979, and the cinemas were closed on 7th September 1983 with the Cinecenta playing "Nathallie" and "Hot Tee Shirts", and the Penthouse Cine Club playing "Take Me In" and "Pleasure Cruise".

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

HJHill
HJHill on May 19, 2012 at 2:17 am

“Purpose-built” is wrong. In the 1960s a new, speculative shops/offices development was built across the front of Forster Square railway station, bridging a high and wide entrance opening to the latter. Above that opening were high extensively glazed units in a feature which projected out from the fa├žade of the building and which stood empty for a very long time. Eventually, they were blacked out and converted into two small cinemas. The projection room was above the two small auditoria and used periscope projection. One had to climb a lot of stairs to get to the cinema!

(Cinemas in shop units: that’s how it all started.)

HJHill
HJHill on December 6, 2012 at 11:02 am

The scanned photo shows the view from Forster Square towards Cheapside, with the cantilevered former showroom housing the two auditoria (Penthouse Club and CineCenta; the latter nearer the camera). They had separate entrances at pavement level at opposite sides of the station opening. The Penthouse Club’s is visible on the far corner; the CineCenta’s is hidden behind a lamp post and the “Electricity” showrooms.

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