Astoria Cinema

Lawn Street,
Paisley, PA1 1HA

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Bostock Cinema Circuit

Previous Names: Rink Picture House, Rink Picture and Variety Theatre

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Astoria Cinema

In Paisley, Renfrewshire, some seven miles to the south-west of Glasgow, the Rink Picture House, as the name suggests, was a conversion of a former skating rink. That had opened c1907: films were screened as early as 1909, with the Rink Picture House being inaugurated in 1910 (presumably following whatever work was necessary to comply with the requirements of the 1909 Cinematograph Act, which came into force on 1st January 1910). It was operated by E. H. Bostock and there were said to be 1,000 seats.

The 1923 Kinematograph Year Book lists this as the Rink Picture and Variety Theatre. Shows were twice nightly, with two changes of programme weekly. The stage was 17ft deep, the proscenium 23ft wide and the resident manager was Dick Lever.

By the 1932 Kine Year Book, the cinema had been acquired by H. and C. Wincour, and the name had been changed to the Astoria Cinema. A Western Electric(WE) sound system had been installed.

The 1940 edition listed the proprietor as just H. (Harry) Wincour - and the seating capacity as a rather remarkable 1,400! By the late-1940s the proprietor was Astoria Picture House (Paisley) Ltd.

Although the Astoria Cinema was listed in the KYBs up to 1957, it is thought it closed in 1955 or 1956.

The building was incorporated into the adjacent Arnott’s store. That closed in January 2004 and was demolished about 10 years later. Social housing now occupies the site.

Contributed by David Simpson
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