Coliseum Cinema

Toller Lane and Fairbank Road,
Bradford, BD8 9HL

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Located in the Heaton district of Bradford. The Coliseum Picture House opened in 1912 as a partial conversion of the large Coliseum Skating Rink which opened in 1909. Its original seating capacity was 1,250. At its opening it had a small stage area and a single set of curtains, which operated at least for a a while, by a hand crank. Sound came in 1929.

The cinema’s popularity peaked in the post World War II years, and the cinema had a number of owners, eventually becoming known as the Coliseum Cinema, showing less prestigious fare than the Elite Theatre next door (across Fairbank Road) which had the same owners.

The Coliseum Cinema was closed on 20th June 1959 with Audie Murphy in “The Gun Runners” and “Terror in a Texas Town”. The building was used by the Star Cinemas chain as a storage facility for cinema seats. It was demolished in 1966, though a rear wall remains. An automobile service centre was constructed on the site. This has since been demolished and the site is a vacant plot.

Contributed by Christopher Walczak

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

CSWalczak on June 9, 2012 at 2:21 am

There is additional historical detail about this theatre on this webpage.

HJHill on October 10, 2015 at 4:03 am


The Coliseum was next to the Elite on Toller Lane, with Fairbank Road separating them. The irregular-shaped site is now derelict (2015) but the aerial view still shows the layout of the Coliseum garage and filling station which occupied the site. As a youngster in Bradford in the 1950s, it always fascinated me that Star had adjacent cinemas. When in my early 20s, I used the filling station!

And, being an old curmudgeon: I know Cinema Treasures is an American website; but could we use UK English/spelling, e.g. theatre and centre, please?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 10, 2015 at 8:21 am

HJHill:The address and street view have been corrected, as has the English spelling!

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