Clifton Stone Cross

Hall Green Road and Walsall Road,
Stone Cross,
West Bromwich, B71

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Clifton Cinema Stone Cross

Located in the Stone Cross district of West Bromwich, on Hall Green Road close to the corner of Walsall Road. The Stone Cross Cinema was a project of independent operator W.H. Onions. It was taken over during construction by the Clifton Cinemas chain.

Designed by architect Ernest S. Roberts in an Art Deco style, the Stone Cross Cinema was opened on 16th July 1938 with Eddie Cantor in “Whoopie”. The opening was attended by film star Valerie Hobson. Seating was provided for 896 in the stalls and 306 in the circle. The proscenium was 40 feet wide, the stage 18 feet deep and there was one dressing room. At some period of time W.S. Onions took over the running of the cinema, but it later reverted back to the Clifton Theatres chain.

In its final years of operation, bingo was operated on Thursday evenings, and Asian (Bollywood) films were screened on Sunday’s. The Clifton Cinema was closed on 7th March 1964 with Sean Connery in “Dr. No”. It was converted into a full time bingo club, independently operated at first. Asian films shows continued on Sundays until 1968, when the building was purchased by the Ladbrokes Bingo Club chain. It became a Ladbrokes Bingo Club, which finally closed as a Mecca Bingo Club at the end of 2003.

The building was demolished in May 2004, and in 2008, a block of flats was built on the site.

Contributed by Ken Roe
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