The Cinema Museum houses a large collection of memorabilia and artefacts from a bygone era when “going to the pictures” was an exciting event!
It is a registered charity and also raises money by holding special events such as film screenings and talks. A recent event was “An evening with June Whitfield” which we would have loved to attend but had a prior engagement.
We bought Groupon vouchers for this attraction and was pleasantly surprised as it was far better than expected!! In fact it was brilliant!
We were met by a real character – Ronald Grant (co founder of the museum) – who also showed us round. There is actually an old photo of him in the uniforms exhibition section as he used to work in one of the old cinemas. It’s located in The Masters’s House – an old building that used to be the Lambeth WorkHouse – in South London and has links with Charlie Chaplin as he spent time at the Lambeth Workhouse as a child. It’s only a short walk from Kennington tube station and is signposted.
The website is www.cinemamuseum.org.uk/topics/about/history/
There is so much to see – original signage, photos, posters, old projectors, uniforms etc. and Ronald helped bring it all to life with his enthusiasm and relaxed manner. He is very knowledgeable and interesting and is keen that you enjoy the tour. In fact he enjoys answering questions so much so that the previous tour overran slightly! Nothing is too much trouble for him and it’s clear that he still retains his passion for the cinemas of yesteryear. We couldn’t have asked for a better guide!
It is a fascinating place especially if you remember the old “Gaumonts” and the “Golden Age of Hollywood” – we really enjoyed our visit. Please note that although some of the exhibits are on the ground floor there are quite a few stairs to access the other floors and I can’t remember if there was a lift-however on the leaflet we have it does state “disabled access” so I would suggest giving them a call or send an email.
Concession prices available.
I have only included a few photos so as not to spoil the experience for anyone thinking of visiting.