Pavilion Cinema

294 High Street,
Aldershot, GU11

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Pavilion Cinema Aldershot

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This cinema was built about 1924 or 1925 as a single auditorium and single screen. It was taken over by County Cinemas in January 1928. Once described as ‘being replete with every modern comfort’, it originally screened silent films but was updated and refurbished in the early-1930’s being the first cinema in Aldershot to show ‘talkies’.

The interior was fairly plain but had a barrel vaulted ceiling with ornate ventilation panels with its projection room built outside and above the circle foyer roof. County Cinemas were taken over by the Oscar Deutsch chain of Odeon Theatres Ltd. in September 1939.

The cinema was closed on 29th September 1956. Once it closed, it became a fruit and veg wholesalers depot.

The Star Cinemas Group wanted to reopen it as a bingo hall in the early-1970’s but this never happened and failure of this plan lead to demolition. An office block named Campbell House now stands on the site.

The Pavilion Cinema generally did second-run screenings or transfered runs of films shown at the ABC/Ritz or Empire/Odeon.

Contributed by Mike Luck

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on July 9, 2005 at 5:10 pm

The Pavilion Cinema closed on 29th September 1956. The office block which was later built on the site is named Campbell House.

ritzman
ritzman on July 20, 2012 at 11:40 am

Ken, I’m not so sure about the closure date. I was born in 1956 and can clearly remember a long queue one evening for a performance and the red neon Pavilion sign glowing as I watched from my grandparents home in nearby Church Hill about 1960/61. Maybe it was closed by Rank about that time in 1956 but continued under another operator? I could be wrong but will try and visit Aldershot libraray to view old copies of the Aldershot News and scan the local cinema ads. I can remember going into the Pavilion when it was stripped out and being used by H.P Uglow veg wholesaler. I was given a guided tour and shown all parts of the then ex cinema including the projection box. The balcony front still had the deep red velvet covering in place with poilshed brass rails and the gas lighting was still working in the balcony area.The balcony front was decorated with swags of fibrous plaster decoration. The circle foyer was rather spacious and a flight of curved shallow steps lead to the circle entrance doors. The stalls area was rather long and and you could see that when the seating was in place there had been only 1 central aisle leading to the stage and screen. There was 1 dressing room back stage and the screen frame was still in place minus the screen. The proscenium was square and surrounded by decorative plaster work. The floor rake was quite pronounced from the back stalls but leveled out at the stage front. Built on a flat site the auditorium rake was achieved by building the entrance foyer about 6 feet above ground level and access to the foyer was by a flight of steps to the 4 sets of oak and glazed entrance doors.The paybox was to the left of the foyer together with the staircase to the circle and a door lead to another internal staircase that took you to the projection suite built above the circle foyer roof.

ritzman
ritzman on July 20, 2012 at 12:01 pm

New picture posted

ritzman
ritzman on June 19, 2014 at 10:39 am

Newspaper advert for the Pavilion along with the Alexandra Cinema both owned operated and built by County Cinemas

ritzman
ritzman on June 20, 2014 at 11:55 pm

3 New photos added

ritzman
ritzman on November 1, 2014 at 4:06 pm

Rare photo added of gala re-opening after the installation of sound 23/06/1930

ritzman
ritzman on November 5, 2014 at 10:03 pm

New photo added of cicinemtaken soon after opening 1924

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