TQ1280 : Southall: Former Himalaya Palace Cinema

taken 8 years ago, near to Southall, Ealing, Great Britain

Southall: Former Himalaya Palace Cinema
Southall: Former Himalaya Palace Cinema
This former cinema on South Road is thought to be the only one built in the UK in a Chinese style, and its uniqueness merits Grade II* Listed Building status. The cinema dates from around 1928/9 when it replaced an earlier smaller cinema on the site. The new cinema was designed by George Coles and was named The Palace when it opened. There is a photo of The Palace when it opened in 1929 here LinkExternal link (Archive LinkExternal link ) In the 1960s it was renamed The Godeon, then the Godina and in 1972 the Liberty Cinema.

In the early 1980s it closed due to falling takings and became an indoor market. It was then rescued from a near derelict state by a local businessman, Mr Surjit Phander, and reopened as a three screen cinema in 2001. Please see Danny's TQ1280 : Himalaya Palace Cinema, Southall for a view of the building in this guise. Alas competition from the home Bollywood DVD market made it uneconomic to continue running, and in 2010 it closed its doors as a cinema again. Just like the previous time it closed it has now become an indoor shopping centre again.

The English Heritage website describes the exterior thus:-

"Former cinema, later market hall. 1928, an early work by George Coles and the only known example of a cinema built in the Chinese style. Built of brick but street elevation faced with coloured glazed tiles and with red pantiled Pagoda roofs. Two storeys. Central section of five bays has tall windows with geometrical design panes, flanked by triangular pilasters. There are three blank panels above. The pagoda roofs have a band of moulded tiles at the ridge and similar cornice and there are terracotta carp finials. Lower wings have corner pilasters, panels for advertising and similar pagoda roofs with terracotta dragon finials. Reeded band divides floors. Ground floor retains four original panels with console brackets but the canopy has been replaced and the entrance doors altered." The website then goes on to describe the interior, which apparently is little changed from its original cinema days.
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TQ1280, 294 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Sunday, 13 January, 2013   (more nearby)
Saturday, 19 January, 2013
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Business, Retail, Services 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 1279 8033 [10m precision]
WGS84: 51:30.6390N 0:22.5657W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TQ 1282 8034
View Direction
West-southwest (about 247 degrees)
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Other Tags
Grade II(star) Listed Building  Cinema (Former) 

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