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Birmingham Cinemas

Williamstreeter

master brummie
Has anybody mentioned Cisco Kid and his sidekick Pancho , I think it was The Crown Icknield Port Rd I watched this on . Then of course there was The Edgbaston on Monument Rd which I will always associate the film The Password is Courage with Dirk Bogarde , reason being it was snowing when I went in, snow featured greatly in the film and after all it was the winter of 1962/3 of which a lot of the more mature of us will remember
 

Robert Ensor (bob)

master brummie
The Essoldo Longbridge has changed gym owners again. Is now Everlast Fitnesss Club.



I recall standing in line all the way out to the road with my sister to watch Cliff Richard in summer holiday never got in there was about 12 of us that never got in, my pop had a friend who worked at the Austin's who had to take his wife there every Thursday to play bingo, as I got a little older before it became a bingo hall we would sneak in through a window in the girls loo
 

Williamstreeter

master brummie
I recall standing in line all the way out to the road with my sister to watch Cliff Richard in summer holiday never got in there was about 12 of us that never got in, my pop had a friend who worked at the Austin's who had to take his wife there every Thursday to play bingo, as I got a little older before it became a bingo hall we would sneak in through a window in the girls loo
Just to make it up to you , I can sing you the theme tune To Summer Holiday , if you never got to see the film
 

Banjo

master brummie
I saw Summer Holiday at the ABC Forum in New St. I saw it from the Gallery. I'm sure many of the members remember those seats. You didn't look up to the screen, you looked at it just above your knees.
 

Robert Ensor (bob)

master brummie
I see this thread started by Alf was about Odeon theaters I went to see Deep Purple the Odeon New Street in the early 70's but to get the tickets I did a rear brake job on a Austin A 60 a trade with the guy I guess brakes meant more than Deep Purple
 

Banjo

master brummie
When I was a youngster In 1955 I was living in Leamington Rd, Sparkbrook. I had a wonderful choice of cinemas in the area, Olympia, Carlton, Imperial, Piccadilly, Waldorf, Moseley Picture House & the Alhambra were all within walking distance. So, looking through the cinema listings on the inside page of the Birmingham Mail to find a cinema that was showing two 'U' pictures, off I'd go. Sometimes, if there wasn't any 'U' pictures I'd go anyway and ask an adult to take me in to see an 'A' film. I can hardly believe I did that now but, perhaps it really was a more innocent time. At the cinema you usually queued at the door and around the side, and even as far as the rear of the building. Sometimes when people bought their ticket, they didn't go in because the film they came to see was still showing from the previous programme and they didn't want to see the ending before they had seen the rest of it. After the supporting film was shown came the Pearl & Dean adverts & Pathe News, sometimes even a short cartoon. Then, during the intermission, people would hurry down to one of the ice-cream ladies for a tub, choc ice or a Kia-Ora drink. I made do with my 3d Palm toffee bar. Then came the main feature. For me it was probably a Burt Lancaster pirate film, a Martin/Lewis comedy or a Richard Todd war film. Anyone else remember the experience being spoilt trying to blow/waft away the smoke from the bloke smoking a cigarette sitting in front of you? Then at the end of the days programme trying to get out before the National Anthem started? Funnily though, when you heard that drum roll and you had only got as far as the aisle, some invisible force compelled you to stop and stand until it had finished.
 

Williamstreeter

master brummie
When I was a youngster In 1955 I was living in Leamington Rd, Sparkbrook. I had a wonderful choice of cinemas in the area, Olympia, Carlton, Imperial, Piccadilly, Waldorf, Moseley Picture House & the Alhambra were all within walking distance. So, looking through the cinema listings on the inside page of the Birmingham Mail to find a cinema that was showing two 'U' pictures, off I'd go. Sometimes, if there wasn't any 'U' pictures I'd go anyway and ask an adult to take me in to see an 'A' film. I can hardly believe I did that now but, perhaps it really was a more innocent time. At the cinema you usually queued at the door and around the side, and even as far as the rear of the building. Sometimes when people bought their ticket, they didn't go in because the film they came to see was still showing from the previous programme and they didn't want to see the ending before they had seen the rest of it. After the supporting film was shown came the Pearl & Dean adverts & Pathe News, sometimes even a short cartoon. Then, during the intermission, people would hurry down to one of the ice-cream ladies for a tub, choc ice or a Kia-Ora drink. I made do with my 3d Palm toffee bar. Then came the main feature. For me it was probably a Burt Lancaster pirate film, a Martin/Lewis comedy or a Richard Todd war film. Anyone else remember the experience being spoilt trying to blow/waft away the smoke from the bloke smoking a cigarette sitting in front of you? Then at the end of the days programme trying to get out before the National Anthem started? Funnily though, when you heard that drum roll and you had only got as far as the aisle, some invisible force compelled you to stop and stand until it had finished.
Saturday afternoons as a kid we were off to The Ledsam , we were'nt bothered by ice cream or kia-ora , reason being we had cold sausage sandwiches they were hot to start off with but the walk to The Ledsam cooled them down . On the way home smack your rump to make your horse go faster, or sword fighting , or arms outstretched if it was a war film we were pilots
 

Jayell

master brummie
At the Regal in Handsworth, in the intermission, we also got the organ rising up from the floor with the organist playing music for about 10/15 minutes!
 

Radiorails

master brummie
I expect many of the larger cinemas in the Birmingham area had theatre organs. Older ones were usually installed as a support for the silent films of the earlier part of the 20th. century. Many here will remember the ones, like Jayell mentioned, back in the forties, fifties and sixties.
Anyone loving the sounds of this type of organ might be interested in this web site where it mentions Hampton-in-Arden.
This one is interesting. It says it was the first Wurlitzer exported to the UK, once in Walsall and now alive and kicking in Devon.
I wonder if any of Birmingham's theatre organs are still in site (I doubt it) or still survive elsewhere?
 

Phil

Retired Layabout
Radiorails

There are not many still existing Birmingham cinemas that were built in the time of silent films let alone the organs.
 
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