Grafton Cinema

72 Grafton Street,
Dublin 2

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Classic Cinemas (UK), Provincial Cinematograph Theatres Ltd.

Architects: Richard Francis Caulfield Orpen

Firms: Robinson & Keefe

Functions: Retail

Previous Names: Grafton Street Picture House, Grafton News & Cartoon Cinema

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Grafton Cinema

Located in the south of the city centre. The Grafton Street Picture House was opened on 17th April 1911, in a conversion of an existing building to the plans of architect Richard F.C. Orpen. It was a small cinema, but was very successful and in the summer of 1913 it was enlarged to seat 620 and was taken over by Provincial Cinematograph Theatres(PCT) of London, England. It had a tea room for the convenience of its patrons.

In 1929 further alterations were carried out to the plans of architectural firm Robinson & Keefe, and a Western Electric(WE) sound system was installed. In the 1930’s it went from playing first-run to second-run and revivals.

On 18th September 1959 it was re-named Grafton News & Cartoon Cinema. CinemaScope was installed in May 1968 and it reverted back to screening feature films as the Grafton Cinema, operated by the London based Classic Cinemas chain. It was sold to Irish Amalgamated Cinemas Ltd. in November 1972, but was closed in 1st December 1973.

It was converted into retail use and for many years the interior remained untouched.

Contributed by Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

PatOBrien on April 3, 2018 at 9:14 am

Was the Grafton Cinema not further up on the opposite side of the street, just before the junction with Chatham Row? I passed it recently and it is being redeveloped as a high end retail store.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on August 2, 2018 at 2:06 pm

Author John Banville wrote in his memoir “Time Pieces” about visiting this cinema, the atmosphere of the place, and the amatory activity that took place in the rear stalls.

Biffaskin on July 3, 2023 at 2:02 pm

In 1932, Robinson & Keefe made further improvements, not as ‘Emergency exit, new lavatories in basement &c. for Grafton cinema (work includes rebuilding of front wall at Prost’s, No. 73)’.

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