Arcadia Cinema

2 Cheapside,
Spennymoor, DL16 1DJ

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Additional Info

Functions: Bar

Previous Names: Gowlands Arcadia Electric Palace, Grand Electric Cinema

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An early postcard of the Grand Electric

Located in Spennymoor, County Durham, five miles south of Durham city. Originally opened as Gowland’s Arcadia Grand Electric Hall in August 1910, it had 1,000 seats. Part of the building also served as an indoor market. It was destroyed by a fire in 1929.

It was rebuilt as the Arcadia Cinema, and by 1931, it had been equipped with a Western Electric(WE) sound system. It had a stage, and there was a cafe for the convenience of its patrons. It was soon operated by Maurice Maude of Cumbria, as part of his M.B.C. Cinemas Ltd. company based at the Hippodrome Theatre, Workington.

The Arcadia Cinema was closed by M.B.C. Cinemas around 1970, and was converted into a bingo club, eventually becoming a Top Ten Bingo Club.

This later closed and the building was purchased by the J.D. Wetherspoon chain chain of pubs, opening on 28th March 2013 as the Grand Electric Hall.

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

terry on August 10, 2013 at 11:53 am

The Arcadia Cinema closed early in 1963 and became the ‘Arcadia Bingo’. In the 1980’s it was acquired by The Noble Organisation who split the building into a smaller Bingo Hall and an amusement arcade. The impressive main entrance was abandoned and relocated to the side of the building.

It briefly sported the name ‘Essoldo Bingo’(Nobles had taken them over and used the name at certain venues. This must have confused the natives as the original Essoldo was just a few yards away………

terry on December 15, 2018 at 2:25 pm

2 photos uploaded showing the Arcadia as it was after the rebuild of 1931.

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