|27 June 1902 – “Animated Pictures” at Parr Hall show Walking Day, etc (first of 12 nights).|
|9 Dec 1907 – “Animated Pictures” shown at Royal Theatre of Varieties, Scotland Road. Later the Futurist cinema and then the Regent cinema.|
|5 October 1908 “Living Pictures” were shown at the Parr Hall once a fortnight.|
|8 November 1938 – Birth of actor and film director Richard Curtis (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Notting Hill, and Love Actually). He lived in Appleton, Warrington in the 1970s.|
|10 March 1961 – Funeral of entertainer and film star George Formby Jnr. He is buried in Warrington cemetery.|
|Summer of 1990 – The only person watching Back to the Future at the Odeon on Buttermarket Street was me!|
|2 January 2011 – Death of Warrington-born film star Pete Postlethwaite.|
Table of Cinemas in the Town
|ORDER||CINEMA||LOCATION||DATE OPENED||SCREENS||SEATS||DATE CLOSED||YEAR DEMOLISHED|
|1||PALACE CINEMA||15-17 FRIARS GATE||30 SEP 1907||1||1,100||1964||STILL IN USE|
|2||PARK PICTURE PALACE||SANKEY STRET||APR 1910||1||500||c1914||1970s|
|3||PICTUREDROME/CAMEO||83 SANKEY STREET||JUN 1910||1||384||1956||STILL IN USE|
|4||GRAND CINEMA||WILDERSPOOL CAUSEWAY||11 JUL 1910||1||600||1952||1952|
|5||PAVILION||6 LOVELY LANE||SEP 1912||1||600||1957||STILL IN USE|
|6||CENTRAL||78 SANKEY STREET||JUL 1913||1||500||1916||STILL IN USE|
|7||NEW PICTURE HOUSE||WINMARLEIGH STREET||7 JUL 1913||?||?||?||?|
|8||STAR KINEMA||76 CHURCH STREET||19 JAN 1914||1||627||1958||?|
|9||QUEENS||ORFORD LANE||1914||1||1,179||28 MAY 1960||1960|
|10||GEM PICTURE HOUSE||WINMARLEIGH STREET||17 JAN 1916||1||40||1960s||1960s|
|11||FUTURIST/REGENT||3 SCOTLAND ROAD||JAN 1921||1||543||1958||1980s|
|12||EMPIRE||BUTTERMARKET STREET||OCT 1921||1||?||1961||1961|
|13||PREMIER||24 POWELL ST, LATCHFORD||JAN 1922||1||460||1959||STILL EXISTS|
|14||DRILL HALL CINEMA||5 CHURCH ROAD, LYMM||30 OCT 1922||1||670||30 JUN 1962||STILL IN USE|
|15||ODEON WARRINGTON||41-43 BUTTERMARKET STREET||11 JAN 1937||3||1,635||27 AUG 1994||1994|
|16||RITZ/ABC||BRIDGE FOOT||23 AUG 1937||2||1,928||23 OCT 1982||2015|
|17||AMC/UCI/ODEON LUXE WESTBROOK||WESTBROOK||MAR 1988||10||2,080||STILL OPEN||STILL IN USE|
|18||CINEWORLD||TIME SQUARE||11 DEC 2019||13||2,263||STILL OPEN||STILL IN USE|
Cinemas That Never Were
The Wire Works (2005)
In 2005 a planning application was submitted by Modus Iliad to redevelop vacant land on Winwick Street just north of Central Station.
The development would have been a mix of residential apartments, retail facilities, gym, beauty spa, restaurants and bars with a cinema, hotel and art gallery anchored to the project to create a mix of uses for town centre living. 1,200 parking spaces would have been available.
At a meeting of Warrington Borough Council on Friday 24 February 2006, planning permission was granted, subject to final approval by the Secretary of State.
In April 2006 the Secretary of State decided that there should be a public inquiry into the project. That inquiry began on 27 February 2007. After planning permission had been approved, it was hoped that work could begin in late 2007, but the scheme was later shelved.
Dallam Centre would have been the first priority as it was being moved to Orford Lane, with the bill being met by the developers. The Dallam Centre itself was closed at the end of 2012 and demolished when the services it offered were moved to other parts of the town.
Image used with permission from Modus Iliad.
New Time Square (2005)
In a decision which disappointed the Time Square retailers, the government refused to grant planning permission for the scheme.
Reasons given were that it was not in a regeneration area and that it was currently in use. The £75million New Time Square was to be a mixed use development including a 10 screen multiplex cinema, family restaurants, retail units and residential apartments.
It would have included underground car parking and a new bridge link to the existing multi-storey car park on Academy Way. The new site would complement the existing area and encourage shoppers to stay on in the evening.
Central to the development was a landscaped public square where people could meet and watch a big screen or enjoy the experience of alfresco dining at one of the many restaurants.
It was designed to complement the Market Hall and the adjoining retailers, and the developers believe it was important for the future of Warrington’s south-east quarter, and as a new town centre venue New Time Square would be an asset to the whole of Warrington and beyond.
The partnership behind the scheme was made up of The Big Apple Warrington, Amstone, Dalgleish Retail Property Insight, Lowry Homes, Signet Planning and Leach Rhodes Walker Architects.
I am grateful for the help and assistance from Big Apple Warrington and express my appreciation for permission to reproduce their artist impressions and descriptions, which have been incorporated into my own text.