TL8030 : Halstead: The Empire Theatre

taken 9 years ago, near to Halstead, Essex, Great Britain

Halstead: The Empire Theatre
Halstead: The Empire Theatre
The Empire Theatre is on Butler Road, and, despite what it says on the name board is, alas, currently not a cinema. I write currently because the venue has had such a chequered history, being variously a cinema only, a theatre only, both and neither, that nothing can be ruled out!

It opened in 1915 as a purpose-built cinema with 450 seats, but soon added live entertainment to the bill. The arrival of the talkies in the 1930s saw the temporary end of live entertainment as the owners concentrated purely on showing films. In 1951 the cinema was refurbished with the addition of the current frontage, but the arrival of TVs in homes led to dwindling admissions such that by 1971 it was forced to close entirely. However the cinema was mothballed in case there was a change of fortune and in 1978, following the formation of the Halstead Empire Theatre Trust, the venue re-opened as a cinema and theatre.

However the recent opening of the Cineworld multiplex in Braintree had a detrimental impact on the local demand for a cinema and in 2005, with admissions falling again, the decision was taken to stop showing films. However, in 2009, live entertainment, including bingo sessions, continues at The Empire.

See LinkExternal link for details and support your local theatre!
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TL8030, 26 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Monday, 24 August, 2009   (more nearby)
Saturday, 29 August, 2009
Theatre   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TL 809 307 [100m precision]
WGS84: 51:56.7380N 0:37.8816E
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TL 809 307
View Direction
SOUTH (about 180 degrees)
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