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Report - New Olympia Picture Palace, Todmorden - March 2010

Discussion in 'Leisure Sites' started by Ojay, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Ojay

    Ojay Admin
    Staff Member Admin

    Nov 24, 2008
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    New Olympia Picture Palace, Todmorden - Visited By Ojay & Stepping Lightly


    A corrugated iron building erected in 1908 in the grounds on Ridgefoot House. The original Olympia opened as a skating rink. On 29th January 1910, it became a cinema. In 1912, colour films arrived. In 1916, Herbert Hartley and manager Albert Ernest Nicholls, bought the place – see Hartleys Cinemas Limited.

    In 1917, Bennett & Tolfree Limited were lessees.

    The cinema was demolished in May 1931, whereby construction began on a new Art Deco building (New Olympia Cinema). Serious flooding on 4th Novemebr 1931 disrupted the construction and it was eventually completed ready for opening in 1932.


    A good central location opposite the bus station gave the Cinema the edge over the others in town and as it had the largest seating capacity and a full stage, the New Olympia immediately became the 'best' venue in the town. Even Stepping Lightly has fond memories of this place.

    It lasted longer than its rivals (the Hippodrome q.v. and the Gem Cinema now demolished), but eventually closed its doors in 1966, where it was left empty for some time, before later being used as a bingo hall. It has since been a Kwik Save supermarket and a Netto, which closed in 2008.

    Since the supermarket chain closed in 2008, the building has been sealed and left abandoned ever since.

    During all this time the seating gallery and the projection rooms etc have been hidden above, some of the back stage area had been partially used for offices, but otherwise was in-tact.

    It goes without saying that although hidden, had been somewhat trashed over the years as you can see from the photos below.

    All in all good to see, although access was a little tricky :D

    Upto viewing gallery


    Viewing gallery


    Inside projector room








    Surrounded by junk






    Thanks for looking :thumb

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