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Report - Mr Smiths Nightclub - Former ABC Cinema Warrington July 2014

Discussion in 'Theatres and Cinemas' started by Milleniumd, Jul 22, 2014.

  1. Milleniumd

    Milleniumd 28DL Full Member
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    WARRINGTON'S iconic Mr Smith's night club and former Ritz cinema building is set to be bulldozed on August 11 by its current owners.
    Salford Quays based LPC Living Ltd have given notice of demolition to Warrington Borough Council.
    As the building is not listed there are no powers to stop the demolition going ahead although fans of the building have launched a facebook group in a bid to save the building which shot to fame in the 1980s with the "Hitman and her" show featuring Pete Waterman and and Michaela Strachan.
    LPC Living Ltd is applying to Warrington Borough Council for the prior approval of the Local Planning Authority for the method of demolition and the proposed restoration of the site listed as the Halo Nightclub Off Wilson Patten Street, Bridgefoot.
    The application was lodged last Friday and states demolition will start on August 11.
    Town centre champion Mike Hannon, deputy leader of the council said he had "mixed feelings" on the demolition of the building.
    "I was a regular at the ABC as a youngster so will be sorry to see it go.
    "But the council has had long term plans for the waterfront for some time, so whatever happens to the site I would like to hope that it would include mixed leisure and residential to enhance the offering of our town centre.
    "As a council there is nothing we can do to stop demolition but we can try and have some influence on what is developed on the site."
    Mr Smith’s was formerly the Ritz and then the ABC cinema before it shot to fame in the 1980s, attracting large numbers of revellers each week.
    More recently, it had short openings as Synergy and Halo nightclubs in the late 2000s but never attracted the same numbers to make it a viable business.
    Warrington council failed in an attempt to buy the building in 2011 when it wanted to include the site in its plans to improve the waterfront area next to the Mersey.
    They council was prepared to pay around £500,000 for the building at the time which eventually went for in the region of £1 million.
    The building opened in August 1937 as a 1,928 seat cinema and the first film starred Robert Armstrong Without Orders and Chester Morris "I promise to pay."
    To join the facebook group set up in a bid to save the building visit https://www.facebook.com/pages/Save-Mr-Smiths/673956979363773

    We visited the site in July 2014. Unfortunately the site had been accessed some hours earlier. The people we encountered inside had been drinking from the optics left in the premises and were hostile and in the confines of a very dark nightclub, intimidating. We took a tripod and flash but were not given the opportunity to get things set up due to the verbal threats aimed in our direction. This is the best we could do. Im intending to go back. With some harder mates.


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  2. KM_Punk

    KM_Punk Muppet
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    Nicely done, shame there were some douchebags in there :thumb
     
  3. Session9

    Session9 A life backwards
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    At least you got a few snaps despite the unwanted company.

    This quote makes me laugh:
    "As a council there is nothing we can do to stop demolition but we can try and have some influence on what is developed on the site."
    Obviously someone else grants planning permission in Warrington...
     
  4. The_Raw

    The_Raw 28DL Regular User
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    Well done for snapping away despite the louts, looks like a fun wander without them shouting the odds at you. That graffiti made me chuckle 'Capitalist Bastards' followed by 'Balls' :D
     
  5. Pinkman

    Pinkman 28DL Regular User
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    Well that's Northern Chavs for you, I should know......I originally hail from Blackpool!
    Good shots considering the scum bags.
     
  6. ACID- REFLUX

    ACID- REFLUX 28DL Regular User
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    Good job considering :) :thumb

    Always personal safety first......well somewhere after protecting Camera Equipment anyway. It pays to have a heavy tripod sometimes, but more importantly people with you that you can trust !

    Says me that mostly does solo stuff :crazy
     
  7. catbalou

    catbalou off the wall
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    Lol..! :)

    Youve done well there, considering the lack of light and having to put up with the idiots inside
     
  8. ViralEye

    ViralEye Drain Ninja
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    Haha Mr smiths usual customers back drinking the slops.

    Looks like it would have been a nice explore otherwise
     
  9. Snake Oil

    Snake Oil go in drains
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    hehe I remember sticking to the "carpet" at the Hitman and Her way back when :D
     
  10. Milleniumd

    Milleniumd 28DL Full Member
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    Thanks for the comments. Telf has managed to get further inside than we did. He's posted some great shots.
     
  11. Bigjobs

    Bigjobs Official Smartarse
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    This pisses me off no ends, for two reasons.

    1. If people had that much feeling about the place, there was nothing stopping them from gathering donations and putting a bid into buying it, but no, they wait until someone has bought it and get affronted by what is planned. Why the fuck do people think they should have a say (outside of the planning process) on what someone does with their property?

    2. They've made a facebook page. What the hell has a facebook page, or an online petition ever accomplished.

    Dickheads.


    Having said that, I wouldn't mind a gander here. Hit me up if you fancy another look around. :D
     
  12. WildBoyz

    WildBoyz Is this the future?
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    Lol. It's serious when a facebook page gets involved! :D
     
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