255 London Road,
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Built on the site of the old Regent Picture House (1920-1936), the Regent Theatre was opened on 27th March 1937 with Richard Arlen in "The Great Barrier", with Hal Tauber and His Regent Orchestra on the stage. Guest of Honour at the opening was film star Will Hay.
The magnificent building was set back from London Road, and had a white stone central facade, which had five sets of windows. Inside the auditorium seating was arranged in stalls and circle levels. The proscenium was 43 feet wide. There was no organ, but a fully equipped stage and dressing rooms were included in the plans, as was a cafe, and a large car park at the rear. Noted cinema architect Robert Cromie acted as consultant architect on the project.
The Regent Cinema was taken over by Oscar Deutsch chain of Odeon Theatres Ltd. in 1943, and it was re-named Odeon on 18th January 1946.
The Odeon was closed by the Rank Organisation on 2nd October 1971, with Albert Finney in “Tom Jones” being the final film. The building was sold to the Territorial Army in January 1974, and was demolished and a Territorial Army training building was built on the site.
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