St James Road,
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The Castle Cinema, St James Road, West Bridge, in the St James area of town, was converted from the former Castle Roller Rink which had opened in May 1909 and closed at the end of 1911. It opened as the Castle Cinema in April 1912, with a 20 feet wide proscenium and 1,000 seats. It was known locally as the ‘tin hut’, probably something to do with the corrugated iron roof. At some point around 1920 it was re-named the St James Electric Cinema. The 1931 Kinematograph Year Book records it as having Electrocord sound with proprietor St James Cinema Ltd. Prices ranged from 3d to 1s.
The St James Cinema closed in August 1936, re-opening on 23rd November as the Roxy Cinema, with Graham’s Roxy Cinema (Northampton), Ltd. as proprietor. It was booked by S. Graham, Oxford House, Oxford Street, Nottingham. Permanent closure came 13 years later on 30th July 1949. The building was absorbed into nearby industrial premises on the Dover Hall estate, until demolition in the 1970’s. A block of flats now occupies the site.
Northamptonshire Records Office holds a few details: resume of cinema entertainment for 1913 and Silver Wedding celebrations with photographs of exterior and interior of venue.
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