“Lights ……. Camera ……. Action”

On Wednesday October 4 many U3A members enjoyed a fascinating light hearted talk at the Town Hall by Rob Hemming on the history of the Regal Cinema. It quickly became obvious that the Regal is a passion for Rob, his talk was informative interesting and peppered with humorous anecdotes.

He educated us through the technical developments of film making from the moving images in the 1870s, to the development of the Cinematograph by the Lumiere Brothers, which gave its name to the movie makers’ art form.

The Regal cinema was opened in 1932 largely due to Victor Morral and local businesses who financed the project upon realising the potential for a second cinema to compete with the Scala.

Perhaps you remember as a child coming to the Saturday morning ‘Chums Club’, or when you were older with your mates or a girlfriend on a Saturday night when you escaped into a good movie for a few hours creating your own theatre of dreams, your “SHAZAM!”.

Many local businesses benefitted from the Regal cinema as passing cinema crowds popped into newsagents, the chippie and the pub.

Other areas of the talk included the fabulous art deco architecture and recognised the invaluable contribution of the cinema staff some of whom gave over 40 years of service. Some of you may even remember “Aunty Irene”.

Cinema began to decline rapidly in the 1960s as more and more homes acquired a television set. Eventually the Regal was refurbished in 2009 after it had lain empty for several years. It was reopened in 2012 and has recently celebrated its 85th anniversary. The cinema is now so popular that successful fund raising will allow the future development of two more screens and a roof top bar.

No monthly meeting in November

Open day on November 1, 12 – 3 pm at the Town Hall.

Visitors welcome

Website: u3asites.org.uk/Evesham