The Plaza Ccinema on Northam Road, designed by architect Robert Cromie, was one of the first of the many super-cinemas built in the 1930s. The 2100-seat cinema was opened by the mayor Fred Woolley in October 1932 and was, by the standards of the time, large and luxurious. The cinema closed in 1957 due to the decline in cinema-going in that decade. The interior of the building was gutted and into the empty shell Southern Television, who had purchased it, built studios, changing rooms and offices. They began broadcasting from there in 1958. In 1969, after new TV studios had been built, the Plaza was demolished and an office block built on the site.

There is a British Pathé film of the opening ceremony of the cinema in 1932.

Plaza Cinema

Image Unavailable

Photograph, 1932

Further reading:

Dream Palaces: Going to the Pictures in Southampton, by Bill White, p42-45. (HS/r)
Southampton Cinemas, by John C. Shepherd. (HS/r)


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