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One historian has claimed that, when film-going was at its peak, Scarborough had 26 cinemas. This probably included temporary cinemas, like the Bar Church schoolroom on Aberdeen Walk and Westborough, where films were shown in the summer season. Nevertheless there were a host of permanent cinemas, including those listed below. A great tradition of cinema-going has always existed in Scarborough, and is being revived through societies, special week-ends and festivals, as well as commercial cinema. Scarborough has a strong presence in film-making too, and has produced two Oscar-winning actors - Charles Laughton, Scarborough's most famous son, and Ben Kingsley, who was born in the village of Snainton.

Odeon: the biggest purpose built cinema in Scarborough. It closed down before being bought, totally rebuilt inside, and then re-opened as the Stephen Joseph Theatre, incorporating the McCarthy Cinema. The cinema seats were rescued from Scarborough's old Floral Hall.

Capitol: On Albemarle Rd., now the Mecca Bingo Hall.

Londesborough Theatre: Originally a theatre, then converted into a cinema. Located on Westborough in the block that now houses Thomas Cook travel agents, the Londesborough seated around 1200.

Royal Opera House: Showing films and concerts until a few years ago. The building was neglected, and permission was eventually given for the listed auditorium to be demolished in 2004/5. A casino has been put up on the site on St Thomas Street.

Aberdeen Picture House: Now a furniture shop on Aberdeen Walk, with the frontage intact and the name in relief on stone cladding.

Arcadia: At the foot of Bland's Cliff next to the Futurist, the Arcadia would alternate films and shows with its neighbour.

Futurist: This seafront building with its magnificent 2,000 plus-seat auditorium has had a chequered history, and its future is still uncertain. Owned by Scarborough Borough Council, and presently run as a venue for live shows and films by Barrie Stead, the "redevelopment" of the Futurist forms part of Scarborough's Urban Renaissance process.


Current Venues:
click a venue for further details:

Futurist Theatre

Hollywood Plaza

Scarborough Library 

Stephen Joseph Theatre