Rosebery Theatre

543 Gardeners Road,
Sydney, NSW 2018

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Rosebery Theatre in 1942

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Rosebery is a inner city suburb about six miles south of Sydney’s cbd. The immediate are was home to three cinemas, the Ascot Theatre in Mascot, the Marina Theatre and the Rosebery Theatre.

Built in 1913 and known for a time as Thornton’s Picture Palace. Historian Paul Brennan operated the Marina Theatre in later years and knows these theatres well, especially the forgotten Rosebery Theatre. “Held as a moveover house or overflow house for both the nearby Marina Theatre and Ascot Theatre, these three theatres run by Snider and Dean used the ONE print on the same night running reels between each other. However The Rosebery Theatre opened only when it became apparent that both the Marina Theatre and the Ascot Theatre were going to be full that session, so it was a standby theatre. It was used often for school assemblies and concerts, boxing, and whatever hire was possible. Gardeners Road Public School was opposite and Thornton’s Hotel was next door (and still is), on the corner of Gardners Road and Botany Road. The Rosebery Theatre was demolished in 1959 after being unused for about 5 years. Today, the Manhattan Bowling Alley occupies the site. The Rosebery Theatre was huge silent movie style, lattice and bare, almost just a stadium”.

Thornton is a significant name in the area, being that of a mayor and several officials at the nearby Rosebery Racecourse. Special trams ran from the Thornton pub to the racetrack.

Contributed by John Gleeson
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