Reading through my (photo) copy of Picture Palaces And Flea Pits (1983) I remembered that when I was growing up in East Camberwell in the early 70s we had 2 local cinemas ! The Broadway, originally Ours, was virtually at the end of my street (also called Broadway). I only remember going once, when I saw Earth vs the Flying Saucers – which scared the life out of me – but mum told me years later that she and dad would drop me and my brothers off there, and go across the road for a counter lunch.
I also remember going to visit grandma in Balwyn, and she was 2 blocks away from the #BalwynTheatre, which had a full kids matinee with a comedian and prizes at interval ! Apparently a lot of theatres had that, perhaps Balwyn was one of the last ?
The Broadway was built in 1921, and I don’t remember what it looked like it at all, but was very impressive, and was dem in 1979. The Balwyn was built in 1930, and either had no interior decoration or it’s been removed, but its still going. The other theatre near me was the Rivoli, also still going ! Given the dozens of cinemas across a Melbourne that have gone completely, that’s quite a coincidence.
Photos from cinema treasures