The Milton Keynes museum, shown in the above three photos, is used for the monthly PPT executive committee meetings. Peter Tipping, fourth from right, keeps the PPT flag flying with regular film shows and exhibitions.
PPT member Fred Fullerton has made a substantial number of videos featuring cinemas, their projection rooms and the people working in them. The collection covers many years and gives a real understanding of how cinemas existed thanks to film projectors and the projectionists operating them. Click to explore.
In this age of digital projection is there a need for a guide to a cinema projection system that many regard as long gone? This is a book for those interested in looking back to how projection used to be. It was recently published so it is not a case of an old book being resurrected. It has a Forward by film director Christopher Nolan who obviously considers the book is still relevant to today's cinema.
It can be found on Amazon where there are images of the extensive contents.
It's been a busy year since leaving Duxford. I have made lots of local contacts including recruiting four new members for the trust. I have collected a full working Steinbeck 35mm film editor from Brighton Film College which was going to be destroyed.
An 18-year-old student Joe (a PPT member) has started showing 35mm films once a month in the Slindon Village hall. The PPT, and others, have helped along the way. The setup is perfect and is working well.
Now I'm looking forward to seeing some better weather when I hope I can repeat live showing of "Films in the park" held in Hotham park, my local park in Bognor Regis. I have enclosed some pictures of the night. The new version of Footloose was screened and attracted over 1000 people on a beautiful summer’s night.
As always, anyone coming down this way is welcome to pop in and say hello.
My best to all.
Charles Morris writes:
Jim Schultz, a cinema engineer of high repute, died in hospital in Leeds on 29 May; he was 92. A lot of exhibitors up and down the country (and indeed abroad) will have known him and, like myself, will have had cause to be grateful to him.
The Cinema Projectionist is a digital archive and website that makes available online The Projection Project’s collection of research materials on the history of cinema projection in Britain. It has been developed by the Project’s team of researchers from the University of Warwick. The Projection Project, which ran from October 2014 to January 2018, was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and investigated the history of cinema projection in the UK through interviews, archives, feature films and photographs, following the switch of most cinemas to digital projection.
From Private Eye 8 May 2020
South Tyneside council has given itself permission to demolish one of the few remaining 1930s super cinemas in the region, despite having no plan beyond leaving behind a vacant lot. The neo-classical style Regent in South Shields was designed by Sunderland-born architect John Cecil Clavering and opened in 1935.
Like many large 1930s cinemas, it was converted into a bingo hall, social club and amateur operatic venue in the 1960s and it remained in use until 2014. In 2017, plans to convert the building into a mix of flats and shops were given the go-ahead.
That application acknowledged the value of the building, with the would-be developers saying: “The scheme will not have a detrimental effect on the external appearance of the building and will not affect the integrity of the existing structure. Every effort has been made to match existing features. The building has been a prominent focal point in the local community since it was built in 1935 and with it being vacant since September 2014, the proposal will put the building back in to good use for the local community.” Alas, work on the scheme never started.
Demolition paperwork filed by the council in March says; “The buildings are to be demolished for future redevelopment of the site”, which will be covered with topsoil and left as vacant building plots for some unknown future use. Permission was issued on 9 April.
Campaigner Sean Wilson, a former planning officer, has launched petition to save the building and is seeking local listing. “This unique and prominent icon is one of only a few remaining 1930s super cinema buildings in the North-east and must be saved from the wrecking ball – before it is too late,” he said.
This is Nigel Wolland standing by the Powers projector in the Museum of the Moving Image in the Astoria New York in June 2019.
Photo by Allen Eyles
Another projector is now on display at EUTC thanks to Bob Mandry and Chris Woollard, and some help from our friends at Bell Theatre Services. This Vic 8 is ex Odeon Leicester Square with a smaller lamphouse, as when used by the PPT at Bletchley Park.
A cinema exhibition was planned for September at Summerlee Museum and we hoped to run a silent film with live cinema organ music in October. The covid-19 pandemic has resulted in these being put off until next year..
The Centre of Contemporary Art in Glasgow have had their Monee projectors removed and donated to an arts group who aim to bring the Old Govanhill Picture House back to life as a centre for artists who want to work with film
These specials are versions of our Rewind magazine covering selected subjects produced for online viewing.