Archer Theatre and Archer Gardens
234 Orrong Road,
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The Archer Gardens with a capacity of 450-seats, were built in 1954 on the corner of Archer Street & Orrong Road, Carlisle, for Eric Nichols and Jack Gynn, both of whom were working as projectionists for Hoyts at that time. This was so successful that in 1958 it was enlarged to a capacity of 1,000. On the strength of this a hardtop theatre was built in Archer Street in front of the picture gardens with a capacity of 560-seats. The Archer Gardens and Archer Theatre were called Archer because of their association and located in Archer Street. By the time of the introduction of television (Channel 7 opened on Friday 16th October 1959) audience attendances had reduced to an untenable level and the doors were finally closed. (the actual closing date in the 1960’s is unknown).
The premises were sold in 1969 and became a supermarket and car park. Later a Chinese restaurant (Kin Wan) and a butchers shop were operating from this site. It finally became an IGA supermarket. It is known that the future of the supermarket had been in limbo for a long period after the site’s owner put forward plans to demolish it and build a 24-hour 7-Eleven petrol station and fast food store. Subsequently more than 6,000 people signed a petition to save the IGA and the Town of Victoria Park also opposed the development, which is on a busy intersection and across the road from an existing BP service station. The petition failed and the original theatre building was demolished and a 7-Eleven store was built on the site.
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