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2004 Photo from the Ken Roe collection
279 Pentonville Rd
Kings Cross (London) UK

Record #5560  
 Opened: 1920
 Closed: 1993
 Current Use: Night Club
Capacity: 1390 seats
Architect(s): H Courtenay Constantine
Architectural Style(s):
National Register:
Current Organ: none
 Also Known As: Kings Cross Cinema, Gaumont, Odeon, Cineclub

Information for this tour was contributed by Ken Roe.

Plans were drawn up in 1913 for the Kings Cross Cinema, but the opening was delayed by World War I and initially the almost complete building was used as a payment centre for demobilised servicemen for a year, and it officially opened in 1920. It was equipped with a Hill, Norman & Beard cinema organ. It became the Gaumont in 1951 and the following year the interior was reconstructed to the plans of T.P. Bennett & Son. In 1962 it became the Odeon and was closed by the Rank Organisation in 1970. It re-opened as the Cineclub, showing uncensored sex movies in 1971 but this was a short lived venture and it reverted to screening general programming as the Kings Cross Cinema again later in 1971. This closed in 1980 and the building was converted into a short lived venture as a Primatarium, screening an 'audio-visual experience' of films concerning the global threat to the environment.

The former stalls area was then converted into a snooker club and former circle re-opened as the Scala in 1981. Showing art house and cult classics it was closed after screening "A Clockwork Orange" the Stanley Kubrick movie which Kubrick personally had banned from being screened in the UK since its initial release. Kubrick took the Scala to court and legal costs caused the cinema operation at the Scala to close. Current nightclub and snooker club use could be halted in the future when improvements to the nearby Kings Cross railway station and the local area, may mean the Scala faces demolition.

 Photos remain the property of the Member and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Member.

July 2004 photos from the Ken Roe collection.

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December 2003 photos from the Klaus Weber collection.

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Last featured 2002-12-27. Last edited 7/3/2004.

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