New York Cinema

68 York Street,
Belfast, BT15

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This was the second purpose-built cinema opened by Fred Stewart on York Street. Situated in the block between Frederick Street and Great George’s Street, it opened in 1916 and replaced the Palace/Electric Picture Palace which had been opened by Mr Stewart across the road, only six years earlier. Unfortunately, the New York Cinema didn’t last long either: it was destroyed by the IRA during the 1921/22 Troubles to prevent it being used as an emergency police station.

Contributed by David Simpson

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Torchlight
Torchlight on November 7, 2018 at 1:47 am

In contrast to Fred Steward’s first cinema, the Silver (orginally the Electric), which was a conversion of an existing building, the New York (the Silver’s replacement, further up the same busy street but on the other side), was custom built. Cinema author Tom Hughes, writing in ‘How Belfast Saw The Light’ (2014) said, ‘The architect was Thomas Houston of Wellington Place and he produced an unfussy, compact looking building with a basic classical facade. The auditorium was spacious with a high ceiling; seating was for 750 patrons’.

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