Liberty Cinema

18 Jun 2000
Liberty Cinema, South Road, Southall, Ealing, Greater London
Photograph (Digital)
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This information is taken from the statutory List as it was in 2001 and may not be up to date.

TQ 18 SW SOUTH ROAD, Southall

962/1/20 Liberty Cinema

18.09.80 II*

Former cinema, later market hall. 1928, an early work by George Cole and the only known example of a cinema built in the Chinese style. Built of brick but street elevation faced with coloured glazed tiles and with red pantiled Pagoda roofs. Two storeys. Central section of five bays has tall windows with geometrical design panes, flanked by triangular pilasters. There are three blank panels above. The pagoda roofs have a band of moulded tiles at the ridge and similar cornice and there are terracotta carp finials. Lower wings have corner pilasters, panels for advertising and similar pagoda roofs with terracotta dragon finials. Reeded band divides floors. Ground floor retains four original panels with console brackets but the canopy has been replaced and the entrance doors altered. The interior remains intact above later inserted ceiling. It comprises Proscenium arch with dragon moulding to corners, geometrical panels, fluted band to top of arch, representing a stylised roof and pilasters. Walls of Auditorium have a Chinoiserie ventilation grille on either side of the Proscenium arch, two similar grilles to the rear wall and two Chinoiserie wall panels resembling trelliswork with floral motifs to the side exits. Eight bay curved sides and seven bay rear wall are divided by pilasters with bracketed Chinese style capitals with floral decoration above. Ceiling is divided into panels by ribs with anthemion motif and square Chinese motif paterae and has two large ventilation grilles similar to the others.The side doors to the auditorium retain Chinese panels. The foyer retains original cornices. The original orchestra pit survives, the original raked floor with bolts to hold seats survives below a later floor and the original concrete staircases with metal handrail survive. This is the only example of a cinema to be built in the Chinese style. The fusion between the Chinese style and the classical style more familiar to the plasterers is most unusual.

[BOE London 3:North West p197.]

Listing NGR: TQ1277580331


This is part of the Series: IOE01/0120 IOE Records taken by Quiller Barrett; within the Collection: IOE01 Images Of England


© Mr Quiller Barrett. Source: Historic England Archive

This photograph was taken for the Images of England project

People & Organisations

Photographer: Barrett, Quiller

Rights Holder: Barrett, Quiller


Brick, Pantile, Tile, 20th Century Cinema, Recreational, Market, Commercial