The Twickenham Museum
Exhibitions : People at Play

Cinemas and Theatres
Cinemas flourished and films were made in Twickenham Teddington

Playbill for the Ritz Cinema, High Street, Whitton

The first ever cinema-showing in the world, to a paying public, was in late 1895. Not long after, in the 1890s, local film shows were given in the old Town Hall in King Street. Films were shown on and off in this hall for a number of years. Part of the Town Hall was demolished for road widening in the 1920’s but the hall at the rear of the premises remains. The famous Lily Langtry made her first stage appearance in this hall.

The first permanent cinema in Twickenham was the Twickenham Picture Palace in King Street opposite the top of Wharf Lane. It operated from 1910 to 1914, with a 300-seat auditorium and the building now houses the Oxfam shop. The area was also home to early film making: Twickenham Film Studios opening in 1913 and Teddington Film Studios, (then Ec-Ko Films and now the TV studios) opening in 1912.

The Teddington Theatre Club has had many homes including, from 1971, the Hampton Court House theatre and in recent years has occupied the new playhouse in Hampton Hill High Street. The Mary Wallace Theatre, in Twickenham, occupies the old mission room.

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