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The Public Hall was an early cinema that was part of the Shapeero circuit. It was taken over by the Denman/Gaumont British Theatres chain in March 1928, and was closed in around 1930.
The building was gutted and the facade rebuilt, all to the plans of architect William T. Benslyn, assisted by H. Pittaway. It re-opened as the Gaumont Palace on 23rd November 1931. The new facade had a modern Art Deco style decoration over the narrow entrance, with new brickwork along the street side of the building. Inside the auditorium, all seating was on a single floor. The magnificent Art Deco style decorations on the splay walls and side walls had four decorative vases (one above the other) each being illuminated from within. There was a central long recess in the ceiling which had cove lighting, and also contained two pendant light fittings.
It was re-named Gaumont in 1937, and was later to become part of the Rank Organisation. They sold the cinema to Classic Cinemas chain on 16th December 1967, and it was re-named Classic Cinema. But this was only for a brief spell of time, as it was soon closed in 1968.
The building was converted into a bingo club, which continued for many years. By 2004, a nightclub named ‘Time’ operated from the building, and it has now been renamed ‘Furse’.
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