70 Oxford Street,
Oxford Road Station Approach,
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Previously operated by: Classic Cinemas (UK)
Architects: Peter Cummings
Firms: Charles Swain & Partners
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Kinemacolor Palace, Tatler News Theatre, Classic Cinema, Tatler Cinema Club, Glamour Cinema Club
The 500-seat Kinemacolor Palace was opened on 30th December 1910 by Manchester Electric Theatres Ltd. It was located on Whitworth Street West, at the bottom of the approach to Oxford Road Railway Station. It was designed by architectural firm Charles Swain & Partners. It was closed in early-1933 and became a furniture store.
It was replaced by the Tatler New Theatre a few yards away on Station Approach which opened on 3rd May 1935. It was designed by architect Peter Cummings, with a seating capacity of 300. Sited next to Oxford Road Railway Station the Tatler News Theatre was in an ideal site for its ‘drop-in’ programme of cartoons and news-reels, and this lasted until September 1959.
After lying closed for a while, it was reopened in November 1961 as the Tatler Classic with a programme of art house and foreign language films which was successful until in 1969 it moved to a more erotic fare as the Tatler Cinema Club showing uncensored adult films to club members.
These kept the projectors rolling until closure came again in August 1981. By February 1985 it had become the Glamour Cinema Club who had vacated their George Street premises, screening uncensored adult films (the original Glamour Cinema has its own page on Cinema Treasures).
Across the narrow pathway to the station was Shaw’s furniture showroom (the former Kinemacolor Palace) which, in 1985, was bought to be converted into an arts complex of 2 cinemas seating 170 and 60, galleries, café and bookshop. It was quickly realised that the former news theatre would make the best and largest screen of the complex and was thus acquired refurbished and reopened on 11th October 1985.
It then began the most popular and successful period of its life, the three Cornerhouse Cinemas as they are collectively known had an enterprising programming policy and loyal audience.
A full refurbishment was carried out in 1997, comfort and excellent technical facilities were paramount.
The Cornerhouse Cinemas was closed on 4th April 2015. One of the final films screened was “Blue Velvet”. The building is used by Manchester University as a teaching space.
In May 2015, the Cornerhouse Cinemas was moved across to a purpose built arts centre known as Home, which contains five screens, a 450-seat theatre and a 150-seat flexible theatre space. It has its own page on Cinema Treasures.
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