The Kingsway Cinema

The opening advertisement. (Scan from newspaper.)

The Kingsway cinema opened in London Road on 27th April 1936, with 1,404 seats in a stadium-style auditorium (with no balcony). There was a cafe and a free car park. The proprietor was Mrs Stanton-Rolls, who ran a building company based in Prittlewell. However, the cinema was leased to, and run by, the ABC circuit, and, later on, it became known as the ABC Kingsway. Peggy Weber, at just 18 years of age, is thought to have been the youngest cinema organist in the country. The Kingsway closed in December 1970, but the Compton organ survived. After being installed at Rochford Hospital, in the mid-1990s it was relocated to the Red Brick Barn, at Charles Tabor’s Sutton Hall Farm, Shoplands. Morrison’s (enlarged) store stands on the site of the cinema.

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