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Report - - The Majestic Cinema, Cradley Heath - Oct 2018 | Theatres and Cinemas | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - The Majestic Cinema, Cradley Heath - Oct 2018


WhoDaresWins

Let's do this
Regular User
Explored with @Seffy & a user who's account is no longer active.

Much thanks for @clebby for letting us know about this one. I certainly found it to have some redeeming features seeing as the auditorium is largely stripped out. Having had a quick read about the place I noticed photos and talk about a famed 'Christie' organ still being in situ. Sure enough it's still there. Speeds report details its history and the way it works well. It seems the organ was played until around 1989.

Thinking we were going to have to light paint pretty much everything in there we came prepared, however we soon found the light switches and turned on everything we could. Unfortunately we didn't manage to get the lights above the auditorium lit up despite plugging the a rather lengthy power cable protruding from the ceiling into the mains. We did get some lights lower down lighting the auditorium floor but I personally preferred my photo with streak of daylight and my P7 for lumens.

Further down into the basement we found some lovely switch gear and not one but three arc rectifiers. The room was rather warm too suggesting something is still getting power... I just regret not trying to light up the pair of rectifiers together!

History:
Located in Cradley Heath, Staffordshire in the West Midlands. The Majestic Super Cinema was opened on 27th March 1933. Designed by Dudley based architectural firm Webb & Gray, an unusual feature for this Art Deco style building is a leaded glass window on the circle stairs, which depicts Heraldic images. Seating was provided in stalls and circle levels. Sound equipment was provided by Western Electric(WE). The proscenium was 36 feet wide, and it was equipped with a Christie 3Manual organ that was opened by organist William Sykes, who soon also became the cinema manager, and held those positions until he retired in 1958. The Majestic Cinema was always independently operated.

The Majestic Cinema was closed on 2nd November 1963 with Doris Day in “Jumbo” and Terry-Thomas in “Kill or Cure”.

It was taken over by the Leeds based Star Cinemas group, who re-opened it as a bingo club named the Majestic Casino. They operated the Saturday morning childrens cinema club from January 1964 until the Cinematograph License expired. The Christie organ was restored in 1973, and was played on the Friday evening bingo sessions for many years. In 1984, organ concerts were held with noted organists Phil Kelsall and Doreen Chadwick featured players. By then the bingo club was operated by a local bingo club Birmingham based bingo club operator Jarglen Ltd. In 1999, it became part of the Gala Bingo Club chain, and they closed the building on 31st March 2000.

Since then the building has been used as a warehouse for the locally manufactured Hawk Cycles, but by 2013, they had vacated the building, and its stands unused, with only two of the shop units operating.


Auditorium:





The projector room:










The Christie Organ:





Arc rectifiers and switchgear:







Other bits and pieces:



 

Seffy

Bally up!
Regular User
They came out well! Wish I’d got some pics of the organ - shame it didn’t work eh.
Good day out in Brum despite this being our only success :rolleyes:
 

mockney reject

Chief Goon
Staff member
Moderator
Nicely done guys, looks like I’m gonna have to head back
 

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