84 Abington Street,
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The New Theatre was opened on 9th December 1912, and was designed by noted theatre architect W.G.R. Sprague. It was first operated as a variety theatre and famous ilusionist ‘Ramases’ topped the opening bill. Films were part of the variety programme from the early days. Seating was provided in orchestra stalls, dress circle and gallery levels. In 1914, it was screening many films, but then went back to live theatre, presenting drama, musicals, ballet & opera as well as weeks of variety.
In 1933, it was equipped with British Thomas Houston (BTH) sound equipment, and opened as a full time cinema with Ronald Colman in “Cynara”. However after a few weeks live shows began again, and cine-variety was being presented. At the end of 1934, it had screened its last film and returned to full live theatre use. The final show was “Strip-Strip Hooray” in 1958.
The New Theatre was demolished in 1960. Today, a branch of the clothing store Primark stands on the site.
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