Monday, 31 March 2014

Odeon Theatre Dalston

About fifteen years ago I came across a batch of old cinema programmes in a now-gone junk shop on the Brecknock Road in London N7. Among the treasures was this one - a 16 pager for the Dalston Odeon dating from August 1939, just a few months after it had opened to the public.

This cinema was set back off the Kingsland Road, on the junction of Tottenham and Stamford Roads, on the other side of the road from Saturday's street market (for more on the Kingsland Waste market - and with another old film spin - please see my post in May 2013: Vaudeville). 

The 18.5 x 24.5 cms sized programme is entirely printed in brown on white, with a lavish collection of photos and illustrations highlighting future presentations, plus there are seven advertisements for local businesses.

the illustration on the cover is NOT the Dalston Odeon (it's actually the flagship Odeon in Leicester Square)

This WAS the Dalston Odeon

It could pack in some 2,000 people on a busy night, and in the programme notes the cinema proudly boasted "a spacious Car Park adjoining the theatre" which was free to its patrons, Deaf Aids "for those patrons whose hearing is impaired" (again free of charge), and continuous performances everyday from 1.45pm (5.30pm on Sundays).

cinema viewing in August 1939, the last month of peace before the outbreak of WW2

"we shall be pleased to mail you a copy of this programme each month upon receipt of your name and address at the Box Office"

The Dalston Odeon screened 40 years worth of films until closing down in 1979. It was demolished five years later - making space for flats.

The building and this business, whose full-page advert appeared on the inside cover of the programme, are now both long gone too

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