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Latitude: 53.5915 / 53°35'29"N
Longitude: -2.2984 / 2°17'54"W
OS Eastings: 380343
OS Northings: 410591
OS Grid: SD803105
Mapcode National: GBR DVDX.68
Mapcode Global: WH97Q.NZQJ
Entry Name: Art Picture House
Listing Date: 12 April 1995
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1250829
English Heritage Legacy ID: 433311
Location: Bury, BL9
Electoral Ward/Division: East
Built-Up Area: Bury
Traditional County: Lancashire
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater Manchester
Church of England Parish: Bury St Mary the Virgin
Church of England Diocese: Manchester
The following building shall be added:
SD 8010 SW KNOWSLEY STREET
326-/2/10025 Art Picture House
Former cinema, now bingo hall. 1921-2 by Albert Winstanley. Brick-clad steel frame with faience
frontage. Slate and asphalt roof. Three-storey frontage to Knowsley Street masks full-height
auditorium with gallery, boxes, stage and flytower. Faience frontage a symmetrical nine-bay
composition, with three-bay centrepiece and single-bay end pavilions all under stepped pediments.
Heavy cornice links these features, which have pilasters defining the bays. Round-arched central
window rises through first and second floors under keystone; the round-arched motif repeated in
the intervening bays over three-light windows. Frieze between first and second floors bears
inscription to left: ART PICTURES and to right: ART CAFE. The facade a demonstration of
post-Edwardian baroque done with much character. The ground floor simpler, with modern shop
front to right not of special interest.
The interior is richly decorated and theatrical in tone. Original round-arched proscenium with
heavy modillion moulding and supported on paired pilasters - a rare survival. This encrustation of
baroque motifs is repeated in the modillion eaves cornice running round the hall, the plaster ribs
of the barrel-vaulted ceiling and its three ventilation roundels and rear dome, as in the intervening
panels of the side walls set between moulded drops. Single balcony with curved front heavily
decorated with cartouches and swags supported on columns with heavy cornice brackets. On each
side of this balcony are two boxes with extended, rounded fronts between Ionic pilasters set
forward of unmoulded square columns; groin vault over between upturned volutes and with
keystones. Some original seating survives in circle. Circle reached via staircase with marble steps
and gilded metal balustrade with 1920s-style Roman decoration. Large former first-floor cafe over
entrance now lounge.
Albert Winstanley had already converted a former baptist chapel on the same site as a cinema for
the Bury Cinematograph Company in 1910-11.
Included as one of the most elaborate and complete examples of an early 1920s cinema, still
exceptionally theatrical in its plan and decoration.
Original plans held by Bury M B Archives.
Listing NGR: SD8034310591
This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.
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