Tim's One Photograph a Day

Rugby Theatre on Henry Street.

Rugby Theatre.

Rugby Theatre: Last remaining traditional cinema still operating in the town.

Last remaining traditional cinema still operating in the town.

It was a bit daft going into town on such a nice day without either camera! Still, the phone is a reliable backup, even if a recent upgrade of the Android Operating System took away the RAW capability. This is Rugby Theatre in Henry Street.



Followers of this blog will know I can sniff out a former cinema or theatre. There are a couple of others still extant in Rugby. One is a furniture showroom and flats, the other, in the next street along, a bar. This one, however, is still operational.

Built in 1913 as the Empire Cinema Deluxe, it became just the Empire Cinema the following year. Like many cinemas in the early years, it also hosted live shows – mainly variety. In 1923, it changed hands and was renamed the Scala, becoming a full time cinema, closing in June 1946 following a fire in the projection room. Such fires were not unusual, due to the flammable nature of film in those days.

Taken over by Granada who, at various times owned the other cinemas in the town, it never reopened, as was sold the following year. It was then refurbished, reopening as the Rugby Theatre on 5 December 1949.

In 1976 the Plaza, also then a Granada Cinema and a much grander affair just round the corner in North Street, closed and went over to bingo. Films were therefore again shown in the Rugby Theatre from the September, something that still continues today inbetween the live shows.

Photograph Details:

  • Taken: 8 Nov 2017
  • Camera: Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge SM-G935F
  • Lens: Integrated
  • Focal Length 4mm
  • F/1.7
  • 1/1856 Sec
  • ISO 40

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