OVER the past few months and years in the Warrington Guardian, we have been reporting on the development of a new town centre cinema.

When the new Cineworld Cinema opens in 2020, it will be the first time a cinema has been in the town centre since the Odeon closed in the late 1990s.

This week in Yester Years, Mr Garratt, from Woolston, has been in touch to talk about the various pictures houses that attracted large crowds in much of the twentieth century.

He said: “The three main picture houses were the Ritz, which later became Mr Smith’s, the Odeon, which is now a Weatherspoon’s, and the Empire, which is now a Heron food stores.

“At these venues it was commonplace for long queues for the first and second houses in the 1950s and 60s.

“Within a one-and-a-half mile radius of the town centre, there were 11 venues. They catered for every kind of film, some may ask why the change to none today,

“Also in the town centre was The Palace, which became a bingo hall.

“Of course if you lived on the estate on the fringes of the town centre there were even more to choose from.

“There was the Premier in Latchford, the Queen’s in Orford, the Kinema in Howley and The Pivilion in Sankey Bridges.

“You were not short of entertainment every day of the week

“Every picture house had ushers selling ice cream at the intervals.

“Underneath the Empire was a huge billiard hall with 24 snooker tables where younger people spent many a happy hour.

“At the back of the Ritz was the Arpley Bus Station, which was Crosville double decker green buses.

“The outer town pictures goers would come in and out of Warrington on these buses.”

Tickets for the best seats would be just nine pence in old money.

Do you have memories of the cinemas in Warrington?

Then get in touch with us here at Yester Years and let us know.

  •  You can email us vis newsdesk@guardiangrp.co.uk.

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