Report - ABC/Canon/Forum - Liverpool - March 2016

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The Man In Black

28DL Regular User
Regular User
Sep 15, 2015
Visited a few nights with different explorers was one id been checking for over 3 years and then the day finally came, a building with stunning architecture and was also nice to get on the roof watching the drunk people below.

The History Part

Opened as the Forum Cinema on 16th May 1931 with Clifford Mollison in “Almost A Honeymoon”. It was designed by William R. Glen and Alfred Ernest Shennan for Associated British Cinemas(ABC) at a cost in excess of 200,000 pounds.

A massive six-storey curved Portland stone facade remains a distinctive and highly prominent feature of Lime Street – one of Liverpool’s major thoroughfares. The foyer was lined with Italian marble.

The auditorium, in a semi-Atmospheric style, depicted Venetian scenes, contains an amazing proscenium treatment consisting of a vast curved canopy over the arch and the side boxes. Indirect light light was a feature, except for a huge ‘sunburst’ light fitting above the balcony.

A shallow stage was provided together with a Compton 3Manual/12Ranks organ on a lift in front of the stage, which was opened by organist Reginald Foort.

Because of the relatively small width of the site the 1,835 capacity was achieved by having a huge circle containing 750 of the seats.

It was re-named ABC from 17th February 1971 and due to its opulence and excellent location the cinema survived intact until 1982 when it was converted to a three screen operation by installing two mini-cinemas under the balcony seating 272 and 217 seats.

From 1986 it had been re-named Cannon. It closed on 29th January 1998 with a special screening of Humphrey Bogart in “Casablanca”, when a special admission fee of 50p was charged.

There were proposals to convert the building into a conference centre, but these stalled and the building has stood empty since closing. Proposals were put forward in late-2007 to convert it into a ‘boutique’ hotel and supper club, with plans going to Liverpool City Council in July 2008 and if permission was granted, work could start in late-2008. The building remained unused and was de-tripled in 2016.

It is Grade II Listed building.

The Rooftop

1 (2).jpg


The Upper Level

The Lower level and Stage

The Toilets
8 (2).jpg

A from high above behind the stage with a waynes world 2 poster and the foyer

That Ceiling

if I can find the rest of the photos from inside the the ceiling with the pulley for the lights ill upload them to this thread.

Thanks for viewing


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Sep 9, 2017
This report is fantastic! I love that the interior is still well preserved! If you feel like being kind, inbox me on how u got in!
I'm on the fat side so scaling the roof isn't a good idea for me!

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