Odeon Colchester

Crouch Street,
Colchester, CO 3ES

Unfavorite 2 people favorited this theater

Additional Info

Previously operated by: County Cinemas Ltd., Odeon Theatres Ltd., Rank Organisation

Architects: Cecil Aubrey Masey

Styles: Atmospheric, Spanish Colonial

Previous Names: Regal Cinema

Nearby Theaters

Odeon Colchester main lobby

Opened in February 1931; originally with an Atmospheric style interior and seating 1,446, it was built for the local David Agar circuit. The designs by architect Cecil Masey also featured a cafe, and it was equipped with a Wurlitzer 2Manual/5Ranks organ and full stage facilities. Taken over by the County Cinemas chain in March 1935, they were taken over by the Oscar Deutsch chain of Odeon Theatres Ltd. in 1939. The Regal cinema was closed in 1944, when it was damaged by a fire, and it remained closed for three months while repairs were carried out. Renamed Odeon in September 1961. Tripled in 1974, with Screen 1 the original circle, and screens 2 and 3 in the original stalls area.

The old dressing rooms were used as a base for Hospital Radio Colchester from 1975 to 1990.

Three additional screens were later added, bringing the total to six.

The cinema closed on Sunday, October 13, 2002 when Odeon relocated to a new purpose built 8-screen multiplex nearby in Head Street.

The old building is currently derelict, although plans have been submitted to turn it into a nightclub. On 30th October 2017 plans were approved to convert the front of the building into 11 apartments and to demolish the auditorium to build 35 apartments. On 31st October 2017, the building suffered a fire.

Contributed by Matthew

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 26, 2006 at 4:33 pm

Three photographs:-
As the Regal Cinema in October 1949 playing the Odeon circuit release.
View link
Still known as the Regal Cinema in this April 1956 view, playing the Odeon circuit release.
View link
As the Odeon in December 1970 playing the Rank circuit release.
View link

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on June 27, 2008 at 6:04 pm

A protest against the planned conversion into nightclub use in January 2004:
Exterior in January 2007:
Another view in April 2007:

eggplant_casserole on March 7, 2012 at 5:48 pm

This cinema was due to be turned into a nightclub, but plans were abandoned this year and it looked like it was to be knocked down:


However, it has now been put on the market… for £1.5 million!


If you fancy owning your own cinema, here’s the sale page:


HowardBHaas on June 14, 2013 at 12:37 pm

Plans to turn it reconstruct the facade & into residences http://www.gazette-news.co.uk/news/10469546.__14_million_plans_for_former_Odeon_site_unveiled/

70mmbobbyj on November 1, 2017 at 12:07 pm

There has been a fire at this cinema, multiple fire engines were in attendance. The “owner” has said they will “improve” security at the site. !!!

Nadeem on October 15, 2021 at 1:32 am

Whenever developers plans fail to build generic crap, they usually resort to low brow techniques to destroy beyond salvage, by vandalism or arson. Happened alot in 80’s. Convienant when their last application was rejected, second one was even worse.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater.