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Media statistics > Cinema > Cinema circuits

UK cinema circuits 1947-1969
This information is part of work in progress, assembled from disparate sources, to track the ownership of British cinemas.
In general, only circuits identified as such in the Kine Year Books are included.
Where additional screens were operated (booked) but not owned, the number is shown in red.
Names of circuits that are listed for the previous period (1914-1945) are highlighted in bold.
A colon : marks years when circuits were in operation but for which the number of screens is not available.
A dash indicates that the circuit did not exist at that time.

THE MAJOR CIRCUITS (100 screens or more) head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
Associated British Cinemas (ABC) London 296 : 404 288 281 153 267 231
Circuits Management Association (Odeon, Gaumont) London 546 646 502 417
Gaumont-British Picture Corporation (GBPC) London 243 form CMA above
Odeon Theatres London 308 Rank below
  [Rank] Odeon (Northern Ireland)# Belfast 20 14 15
  Irish Cinemas [Rank]# Dublin 9 11 9

  Odeon (Ireland)# Dublin 16 9 6 6 5
Rank Theatres London 276 272
Essoldo Circuit (Control) Newcastle upon Tyne 48 : 92 94 183 165 148 52
Star Associated Holdings Leeds 43 : : 70 104 118 62 76
OTHER CIRCUITS
A-B head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
Abertillery Theatres Cardiff 4 4 4 4
Associated GP Cinemas Glasgow 17 : : 19 17 13

8 8
Associated Southport Cinemas Southport 4 : : 3 3
Atkinson's Pictures Bristol 4 : : 3
H Bancroft Circuit Wisbech 10 10 10 10 10 8 6 6
Barber's Cinemas Tunstall 4
Bedford Cinemas Liverpool 6 6 6 6 8 5
The Blackpool Tower Company Blackpool 5 2
L Blond Circuit Liverpool 4 : : 6 6 6 6 2
Bloom Theatres London 6 5 3
Bostock Cinema Circuit Ipswich 19+3 : : 13+3 12+3 10+3 4+4 4+4
Brennan's Cinemas Manchester 16 16 16 16 14 14 6 4
Bridgend Cinemas Cardiff 7 6 4 4
Broxburn Enterprises/Buchan Enterprises Broxburn 5 5 5 3 2
John Buckley Circuit Salford 9 8 7
Buxton Theatre Circuit Manchester 12 : : 7 8 1
Miles Byrne Group of Companies Hereford/Hove 2 4 3 5 9
C head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
Caledonian Associated Cinemas Inverness 51 51 51 51 52 50 49 45
Cambrian Cinemas Aberystwyth 2
Capital and Counties Electric Theatres Poole 4 : : 6 6 5 5 5
Capital and Provincial News Theatres London 21 21 21 21 24 28
Capitol and Allied Theatres Dublin 7 : : 5 4 3 2 2
The Castle and Central Cinemas Cardiff 3 2 1
Catlin's Circuit Scarborough 5 : : 3 1
Central PTs (Lincoln) Leeds 4 : : 5 1
Century Pictures (Widnes) Widnes 3 3 3 3 3
Cheshire County Cinemas Runcorn 8+1 : : 10+1 8+1 7 6 5
Cinecenta London 8
Cinerama Exhibitors (London) London 3
The Classic Cinemas London 86 81
Clavering and Rose London 7 7 7 7 7 7
E C Clayton Sheffield 6 6 6 6

Clifton Cinemas (Management) Birmingham 25+8 : : 24+8 24+7 : 12 12
Owen Cooper Theatres Ipswich 4 4 4 4 4 3
Max Corne Circuit Cardiff 7 : : 4* 3*
Cornwall Cinemas (Newquay) St Agnes, Cornwall 3
Cornwall Circuit Cardiff 9 9 9 9 9 8 8 7
Cox Cinema Co Biggleswade 5 : : 3 3 2 2 2
Cranfield Cinemas London/Hassocks 5 : : 6 5 4
Craven Cinemas Craven Arms, Shropshire 5 5 5 5 5 6 4 1
Curran Theatres Belfast 12 12 12 12
D-G head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
J Davis Circuit London 3
Chas K Deeming Circuit Coalville 6 : : 4 2 1
Deeside Enterprise Cinemas Queen's Ferry 8 8 5 3
Trueman Dicken Cinemas Wells, Somerset 5 : : 4 3 3 2 2
Dorchester Cinema Co Dorchester 4 4 4 4 4 4 2 2
Duchy Cinemas Fowey, Cornwall 3 5 5
Eagle Picturedromes Wigan 11 11 11 11 10 9
Eastern Counties Cinemas Nottingham was United Entmnts 15 10
J F Emery/Emery Cinema Circuit Manchester 33 : : 30 25 9 6 4
Eskay London 12+1 9 8
Evington Cinema Circuit Leicester 10 10 10 7 3
Fife Entertainments Dunfermline 3 3 3 3 3
J M Garner Circuit Wisbech 4
General Cinema Theatres London 4
Glasgow & West of Scotland Cinemas Glasgow 5 5 5 5
Glen Cinemas Aberdeen 9 9 9 9 6
Goldstone (Cinemas) Leeds 3 3 3 3 3 2
Goodall's Pictures (1931) Cleckheaton 5
S Graham Circuit Nottingham 13 : : 13 5 4 3
Granada Theatres London 45 56 54 56 56 55 35 31
S A Gratton Glasgow 8 : : 7 6 4 2
Graves Cinemas Maryport 7 : : 10 10 11 9 9
Gray's Cinemas Dundee 4 4 3 2
George Green Glasgow 14 14 14 14+3 25+2 16 8 8
Leslie Greene Circuit Liverpool 4
I R Grove Circuit Bathgate 9 : : 24
H-K head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
H&G Enterprises (London)/
Albert Grahame Productions
London 8 : : 5
Haggar's Cinemas Winchcombe 5 4 4
Philip M Hanmer (Regent Enterprises) Liverpool 10 : : 12 8 3
Hewitson's Smethwick 3
Highlands Development Trust London : : 5 6 6
Hill Cinema Circuit (Cornwall) Truro 6 : : 3 3 7 6 6
E J Hinge Circuit Newcastle 21 : : 19 13 12
Hudson Cinemas Sheringham, Norfolk 5 : : 2 2
Hull Cinemas Hull 14 14 14 14 16 13 4 4
F R Hunt Circuit Leicester 7 : : 6 6
Hutchinson (Cinemas) Burnley 6 2 5
A S Hyde Circuit Shipley, Yorkshire 12 : : 10 10 7
Ilkeston Cinema Co Ilkeston 5 : : 3 3
Isle of Wight Theatres Ryde 8 8 8 8 7 7
Jacey Cinemas Birmingham 6 : : 10 10 15 13 11
Jackson's Amusements** Rochdale 9 9 9 9 9
Ben Jay's Circuit/Jay's Entertnmnts London 6 6 6 6 4 4
Miles Jervis Cinemas West Bromwich 10 9 7
JHL Theatres London 11 11 11 11
JOGS Cinemas Leeds 13
C S Joseph Circuit Birmingham 9 9 9 9 9
R L Kemp Cinemas Nottingham 9 8
Kinemas (East Anglia) Hove, Sussex 3 3 2 2 2
[Sir] A B King Circuit Glasgow 90 : 89 90 81 73 63 56
L-M head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
Levin's Circuit Nottingham 12 : : 13 11 8 3 3
Levy Circuit (Liverpool Cinema Feature Film Co) Liverpool 7 : : 5 5 2
Lion Cinematograph Co London 5
London & District Cinemas London 6 absorbed by Granada (above)
London and Provincial Cinemas London 17 17 17 17 10 7
MacNaughten Vaudeville Circuit Sheffield 4 4
MAE Managements Cardiff 2 1
Majestic Cinema (Pocklington) Pocklington 4 4
Majestic Theatres Corporation London 5
Marks Circuit Cinemas Manchester 20 : : 8
Nigel Marsh Theatre Circuit London 4 : : 1
Matlock Cinemas Matlock 3 3 3 3
A G Matthews Glasgow 5 5 5 5 3
MBC Cinemas Workington 17 20 20 20 20
Mecca London 4 4
Medway Cinemas London 9
Charles P Metcalfe Leeds 4 : : 3
Mexborough Theatres Mexborough 5 : : 4 3
Midland Super Cinemas London 9 : : 8 6 5
J B Milne Theatres Dundee 21 : : 21 24 27 32 25
Monseigneur News Theatres London 8 : : 7 7
H D Moorhouse Circuit Manchester 47 : : 43 30 15
L Morris/Mrs L F Morris Circuit London 10 : : 2 2 2
N-R head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
New Empire (Burnley)** Rochdale 7 : : 5
Northern Properties/Operators Burnley 7 7 7 7 4
Northern Theatres Co Halifax 10 10 10 10 9
North Western Cinemas Liverpool 9 7
North Western Film Booking Agency Liverpool 11
Ogdens Theatres Circuit Manchester 9 : : 11 12 10
Okin Cinemas London 8 6 5
Ollerton Pictures Bradford 2 : : 5 5 5
Thos Ormiston Motherwell 125
Ormonde Circuit Arklow, Co Wicklow 11 11 11
Orr Circuit Coventry 17 16 14 15
The Palace and Derby Castle Douglas, IoM 9 9 9 9 9 8 7 7
Paramount Picture Theatres Welshpool 20 : : 21 19 16 13 9
Paxon and Chambers Stoke-on-Trent 1+2
John E Pearce Circuit London 7 7 7 7
Poole's Circuit Edinburgh 5 : : 6 4 4
Portman Provincial Cinemas Nottingham 4 3
Portsmouth Town Cinemas Portsmouth 9 : : 10 9 6
Provincial Cinematograph Theatres (PCT) London merged with GBPC (see above)
Prince's Theatres Barnstaple 3 3 2 2
R E Ratcliff Circuit Roby, Lancashire 4 4 4 4 1
Randolph E Richards Circuit Eastbourne 7 : : 8 7 7
S head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
C C W Scott Circuit Torquay 5 5
Scott Theatres/
George Urie Scott Circuit
Motherwell/
Glasgow
5 : : 8 6
Shanring Colwyn Bay 2
Sheffield & District Cinematograph Theatres Sheffield 4 : : 7 7 4
Shipman and King Cinemas London 37 : : 42 44 41 38 35
Singleton Cinemas Glasgow 3+3 : : 3+6 3+6 2+6 6 7
S M Super/Associated Cinemas Manchester 68 : 64 69 7
Smelts Theatres Newcastle 4 : : 3
Snape and Ward Circuit Manchester 11 : : 20
G B Snape Group of Associated Cinema Companies Manchester was Snape & Ward 21 27 11 11
South Downs Cinemas Southsea 6 : : 5 5 4 4 4
South Wales Cinemas Swansea 5 5 5 5 5 5
Southan Morris & Assoc Companies London 7 6 6
Southern Cinemas London 5+3 : : 5+5 4+5 0+5 3 3
W J Speakman Circuit Liverpool 13 : : 10 10
Spey Valley Cinemas Dufftown 3
Splott (Cardiff) Cinema Co Cardiff 5+8 : : 5+7
Frank E Spring Circuit/
Spring Theatres (Cheshire)
Manchester 8 : : 7 5 3
Stafford Entertainments Stafford 3
Stoll Circuit London 16 : : 14 12 5 3 3
Raymond Stross Theatres London 9
Supreme Cinemas and Assoc Companies Belfast 6 : : 12 14 14 11 11
T-Z head office 1947 1948 1950 1952 1956 1960 1967 1969
E Taylor (Cinemas) Builth Wells 6 : : 7 6 4
George Taylor Circuit Glasgow 7 7 7 7 5
Chas Thompson's Circuit Leeds 4
Thomson's Enterprises Middlesborough 4+15 4+15 4+15 4+15 4+17 4+11 3 1
Tunbridge Wells Entertainments Tunbridge Wells 4 4 4 4
Twentieth Century Cinemas London 5 5 5 5
Tyne Picture Houses Newcastle 4+6 4+6 4+6 4+6 4+6 4+5
Union Cinemas and Assoc Companies London 125 : : 114 90 76
United Entertainments Nottingham 24 : : 20 Eastern Co Cinemas
United Picture Theatres London merged with GBPC (see above)
V E H Cinemas Norwich 6 : : 7 7 4 3 3
Victory Theatres Accrington 4 4 4 4 4 4
Vickers Entertainments Wigan 3
Wallaw Pictures Ashington 7 : : 9 9 7+1 3 2
Waller Enterprises (Cinemas) Nottingham 2 2
Walters Cinemas Lincoln 2
H Ward Cinema Circuit Manchester was Snape & Ward 11 7 3 3
Wardona Circuit London 6 6 6 6 4
Warwick Cinemas (Timperley) Manchester 7 5
Wedgwood Cinemas Colwyn Bay 6 6
C E West Circuit Leicester 10
C H Whincup Circuit Leeds 14 14 14 14
Wigan Entertainments Co Wigan 4 4 4 4 4 3
Wirral Picturedromes Wallasey 5 5 5 5 5
Jackson Withers Circuits Cardiff 28 21
Woodalls (Rochdale) Rochdale 3
1,846 : 1,249 1,454 1,234 1,079

* also operated five cinemas in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia
** Jackson's Amusements and New Empire (Burnley) had the same address and management (1947-1952)
# Irish Cinemas and Odeon (Ireland) had the same address and management (1952); in 1947 the Irish Cinema holdings were listed under Odeon (Ireland)

Principal sources: PEP: The British Film Industry (1952); Kinematograph Yearbooks; Margaret Dickinson and Sarah Street: Cinema and State (1985)


Cinema statistics index

Page updated 21 July 2004