ABC Dewsbury

20 Crackenedge Lane,
Dewsbury, WF13 1PT

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Showing 13 comments

simonreed on April 2, 2015 at 1:50 am

Hi Terry, thanks for your reply, I didn’t mention in my documentary about pop concerts as I couldn’t find any confirmation of this, the playhouse was featured in my DVD “memory lane Dewsbury” it features internal and external old video of the playhouse when it was used for bingo. More info here Many thanks Simon.

terry on April 1, 2015 at 2:41 pm

Hi Simon

I am sorry that it has taken so long to respond. At one time Cinema Treasures used to inform me via my linked e-mail address of any replies to comments but they have ceased doing so for some reason.

My assertion on this site re the ‘pop’ shows was as a result of my former Manager, John McIntosh’s direct appeal to me to do so on his behalf and I suppose that I should have said this.

He was Manager at the ABC Playhouse from 1967 until its closure by EMI in 1970 following its sale to Tesco who had made an offer that could not be refused. There were certainly no pop concerts during John’s term of office and he was aware of none during the previous Manager, Bill Spinks' time there either.

The conversion to a supermarket failed to proceed after it was ascertained that there would be problems with deliveries etc. The building then stayed shuttered and empty until its acquisition by Mecca for bingo which preserved the place until they pulled out. This is now happening country wide as new purpose built venues supersede former cinemas. I never thought that I would say this but I think it is a great shame as at least the places still existed with their architectural features largely intact in most cases.


simonreed on June 23, 2014 at 5:52 am

Hi Terry

I have read that the building was used for pop concerts at one point Would you say this is not true? Many thanks Simon

terry on June 22, 2014 at 1:17 pm

My former Manager at ABC Wigan and good friend, John McIntosh was the very last Manager at the ABC Playhouse when it closed in 1970 with a live production presented by DEWSBURY COLLEGIANS AMATEUR OPERATIC SOCIETY in the December of that year. There were, however, no One Night Stand Pop Concerts on the stage of the Dewsbury ABC as it was barred by Leeds and Bradford from presenting such shows……..

Occasionally on a Saturday Morning at the ABC Minors personal appearances were made on stage by celebrities of the day such as Peter Firth and David Bradley aka'The Flaxton Boys' which was a very popular TV Series produced by Yorkshire Television between 1969 and 1973.

janespencer on November 29, 2012 at 8:58 am

Hi Ron Lake, I wanted to ask you when the film Spencer’s Mountain was shown at the ABC Cinema, I think it was sometime in 1963 – I’m trying to track down a photograph taken outside the cinema as only those named Spencer were invited to see the film!! Best wishes Jane

Ron Lake
Ron Lake on November 12, 2011 at 4:12 am

Some photos of the demolition:–

simonreed on November 4, 2011 at 6:45 am

Hi Mr Lake, I was wondering if you were still local to Dewsbury and if it would be possible to get some info on The Playhouse? My email is any information regarding the Playhouse would be of great use for a project i’m working on at present. Many thanks Simon Dewsbury.

Ron Lake
Ron Lake on November 3, 2011 at 11:39 am

I started my ‘working’ life at this cinema in 1959 as a trainee projectionist and can well remember climbing the ladder onto the roof on many occasions. If anyone wants any information about the place I will be happy to help.

TLSLOEWS on April 15, 2011 at 8:10 am

Very true Ian,very nice looking cinema,too bad it has been torn down.

Ian on April 15, 2011 at 7:50 am

Interesting how little change there was Рapart from the huge name Рin the fa̤ade from beginning to end.

TLSLOEWS on April 15, 2011 at 5:57 am

Thanks for the photos Ken and Ian.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on April 14, 2011 at 4:20 pm

A vintage photograph of the Playhouse Theatre, playing the ABC release in April 1949:
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