86-88 Prince of Wales Road,
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Opened as the Regent Theatre, a cine-variety theatre, on 3rd December 1923. Designed by architects G. Duncan Fitt with J. Owen Bond, it had 1,800 seats and utilised two shops in a terrace as the entrance foyer with the auditorium constructed behind the terrace. The auditorium had a barrel vaulted ceiling and boxes either side of the stage. The proscenium was 30 feet wide, and the raked stage was 25 feet deep. There was a fly tower and three dressing rooms. The Regent Theatre also boasted a cafe and ballroom atached.
It was taken over by Associated British Cinema(ABC) in July 1929. In 1939 it closed for alterations and reopened with 1,523 seats. Renamed ABC in 1961 the cinema closed once more for tripling in 1973. Screen 1 had 524 seats in the former circle whilst screens 2 and 3 occupied the stalls with 343 and 186 seats. A 74 video cinema was opened in 1978 in the cafe area. This closed in 1985 and was reopened in 1989 (using film) with 105 seats.
Taken over by the Cannon Cinemas chain in April 1986, all four screens closed at the end of the 1990’s and the interior was gutted and the balcony removed. The shell of the building was converted into the 2,300 capacity Mercy Nightclub which opened on 23rd September 2003.
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