The Old Trocadero Cinema
Whitstable has had a
number of cinemas over the years but, ironically, the largest is perhaps
the least known amongst younger Natives. I am referring, of course,
to the Tankerton Trocadero - known
affectionately as The Troc.
The Troc was located at the corner of Marine Parade
and St Annes Road (close to the tennis courts) and, although
it closed in the
late 1940s or very early 1950s, the entrance and
defunct auditorium survived for many years after the last
film was shown. Eventually, of course, much of the structure was
removed. The photo below is an extract from an aerial shot kindly
provided by Peter Dalrymple and it shows the site in modern times
with the former location of the auditorium shaded in yellow...
Enlarged Extract from an aerial photo
by Peter Dalrymple - © Peter Dalrymple
It has long been our intention to include some
details on the web site but we have repeatedly failed in our quest to gather
documentary or photographic evidence of the enterprise.
Fortunately, we can now start to put that right .... thanks to Ivan Knowles
who has sent us a fascinating advertising flyer
detailing the cinema's program "for August"....
If like me, you are no cinema buff, you may not
recognise many of the star names or movie titles. However, don't
put yourself down too much because there could be a very good reason for
your apparent ignorance... and it concerns the date of the
leaflet. We know it was published in "August"... BUT which
This is where we get involved in a bit of detective work. One
of the dates is given as "Monday 3rd
August".... and the
"third" fell on a Monday in 1931, 1936, 1942, 1948 and
1953. Now, let's look at the list of films and their release
|On With The Show 1929
||Green Goddess 1930
|Tons of Money 1930
||Hell's Angels 1930
||Abraham Lincoln 1930
|What a Widow 1930
||P.C Josser 1930
||Sin Takes a Holiday 1930
|Song of the West 1930
||City Lights 1931
||Sea Devils 1931
If we accept that the Troc lived up to its claim
to be a "super cinema", we can perhaps assume that it
showed the latest releases... and tentatively suggest that the
leaflet may well have been published in August 1931. That would make it old. In fact
, it would make it nearly 80 years old... and far too old for me to recall
very many of those star names! Well, that's my excuse anyway!
||Now let's have some fun by examining
extracts from the document. The "header" on the
left tells us
that the Troc was run by the large ABC (Associated
British Cinemas) chain.
The leaflet also tells us that the cinema's management
was quite happy
to go with the flow and use the local terminology, TROC,
rather than the full title of "TROCADERO"....
provided that it could boast about its "Western
Electric Sound System".
But... why would anyone boast about a sound system!
Well, once again, the dates are significant. The world's first
true talkie film had been released just four years earlier. That was in
1927 when the famous film "The Jazz Singer" gave
cinema its first voice.... that of Al Jolson.
||Despite this innovation, some people were clinging to the past
and convincing themselves that there was still a major
market for silent films. One of those was Charlie Chaplin
who, in 1931, wrote, directed and
starred in the film "City
As you can see from the leaflet, the TROC
accommodated Charlie amongst its "forthcoming
attractions".... but, presumably, had to underutilise its posh new
Western Electric Sound System to do so.
|A waste? Well, maybe not.... because Chaplin received
widespread acclaim for the production. Thus, whilst the
silent movie may well have been approaching its death
throes in August 1931, it still had a place in the hearts
and minds of cinema audiences and critics alike.
Of course, the TROC was quite modest about another
super-modern advancement. On Sunday 16 August, they were
due to screen the 1929 film "On With the
Show". I am told that this was the first "all
colour" talkie film. Colour technology was an
expensive process in film production and it would be another 20
years or more before it became the
dominant force that it is today.
If you take a moment to reflect at this point, you realise that Ivan's memento marks
the early stages of an important period of transition in both cinema development.... and
Whitstable entertainment history.
||Aided by sound and colour, that transition would
herald a whole host of new film stars and productions that even I
would recognise. With radio (or
should I say "wireless") lacking the visuals and TV still some
way off, the world and Whitstable were about to enter a golden
era of cinema.
The TROC recognised the opportunities and cast its
net beyond the town's boundaries.... to Faversham, Herne Bay and
|It even published bus times and added the county title to its claim of being the
There had to be a way of putting bums on seats and,
with a lot seats, the Troc needed a lot of bums. Bums were
bums irrespective of where they came from.
Right... that is perhaps as far as we can go with
Ivan's super memento for the moment.... but we can have a
brief stab at the wider history of the Troc.
Troc Name... and the Native Angle
In producing this article, I became increasingly
fascinated by the word "Trocadero". There are some
exotic explanations of the term. One suggests that it originated
from the Battle of Trocadero in which French troops defeated a
Spanish force. Despite its perennial objections to Trafalgar
Square, France celebrated by creating the Place de Trocadero in
Paris . The "Place" was so splendid that the name was
adopted for other splendid structures around the globe.
Another idea is that Trocadero is a Portuguese
word meaning a "place of exchange/trade". That's a bit
more down to earth... but not as down to earth as the folk of
central Whitstable when it came to the meaning of words. One story
related in our Visitors book suggests that Natives of the 1930s
interpretted TROC as "Tankerton Runs On Credit". This
was a mischievous but lovely piece of local social history.
Tankerton's rapid expansion in the first three
decades of the twentieth century provided housing that many
Natives could only dream about. Such houses had pleasant gardens
(front and back!), bathrooms, inside toilets and possibly even hot taps.
Tankerton became a place for professional and business people. It
also gained a commuter population - many of whom wore suits to
work and topped their attire with bowler hats.
These weren't necessarily people who could afford
to buy a house outright... BUT they were people who could attract
a loan from a bank or building society. The concepts of loans and
mortgages were quite alien to many working people of
the time and they probably viewed such things as "debt"
rather than a routine "financial arrangement"!
The feeling was that "you didn't spend what you didn't
have". If you did, you were living beyond your
means and on "the road to
would be some decades before attitudes changed.
Right up to
the 1970s, there was a feeling that Tankerton was the posh bit of
town and Whitstable the poor relation! Some people desperately
clung to a Tankerton address and avoided using the word "Whitstable"
in correspondence. Those that lived on the fuzzy boundary
between the two localities tried to squeeze their house into the
Oh how things have changed
Now let's try to piece together some of our own
memories and draw on past contributions to our Visitors Book. If
anyone can help with additional information or corrections, please
get in touch.
When Did It
If my dating of Ivan's leaflet is correct, the
cinema was operational in 1931. This ties in with the comment of
John Harman in a Visitors Book entry of 2008.
|I would say the Troc
opened as a cinema in the very early '30s. I recall my
elder brothers talking of having seen King Kong at
that time. Then, later, Captain Courageous.
I myself, as a toddler in the mid '30s, went with my
elder sister Jacqueline on Saturdays to see the Shirley
Temple pictures in which she sang (Shirley Temple that is)
'On the Good Ship Lollipop'. She also sang and
danced to 'Horsey, Horsey, don't you stop'.
I suppose it is just possible that the cinema dates
from 1930 or even the late 1920s - a few years before Ivan's
leaflet came off the press at Rideouts printing works in Harbour
Street. The reason for this is that the document refers to the cinema as the "Troc" rather than
"Trocadero". I would not expect to see the shortened
title on official documents until the cinema had become
established in the local community. There is also no reference to
the cinema being new.
On the other hand, I don't believe that the
cinema's history extended earlier than the very late 1920s.
Substantial chunks of Tankerton were still being developed during that decade and there were rival cinema facilities in
Whitstable High Street that would have happily mopped up the film trade in
the heart of town. By 1930, it was a bit different with that golden era of cinema
dawning and Tankerton becoming firmly established. The ABC
cinema group was founded in 1927 and much of its expansion took
place in the "thirties".
From the outside, the cinema auditorium was a
dour, oblong, "east-west" structure that looked like a
factory. It was largely hidden from view - wedged behind the
properties of Marine Parade (on its northern side) and Tankerton
Road (to the south). However, its west wall could be seen quite
clearly from St Anne's Road where it towered over the tennis court
on the eastern side of the thoroughfare.
Like many cinemas, it had an impressive frontage...
courtesy of some linked developments. Back in 2008, Michael Fitt
explained this in a Visitors Book entry.....
|The cinema and shops were part of the Tankerton
Grand Pavilion with the upper floors being
The complex was owned by my grandfather G. J. Fitt and
my family lived in one of the apartments for a number of
years. My mother Dorothy Fitt was the manager of the Troc.
The complex was sold by the family in the sixties.
The front of the Tankerton Grand Pavilion was an imposing
structure in Marine Parade with upper storey flats overlooking
Tankerton Slopes and the sea. The ground floor comprised cafe/shop
space and incorporated a "typical" cinema entrance with
glass swing doors. This entrance linked to the more utilitarian
auditorium building at the rear. The rough sketch below shows the
It also shows the strong ties between the
Trocadero/Tankerton Grand Pavilion and the Fitt family. Remember
that Mr Arthur Fitt had established the Marine Hotel a short
distance east along Marine Parade and, in nearby Tankerton
Road, George Fitt Motors was becoming the town's biggest and most
celebrated motor dealer.
Interestingly, Ivan's 1931 leaflet specifies the
location as "Tankerton" and excludes any reference to
"Whitstable". This reaffirms the idea that many people viewed the area as
a separate community in its own right rather
than a suburb of its more established and historic neighbour. The
arrival of the Troc must have added weight to that argument.
The Troc may also have helped to establish
Tankerton's centre of gravity. Much of Tankerton was mapped out
and developed on the extensive lands of the Tankerton Estate
between the 1890s and 1920s. In his book "Portrait
of a Seaside Town" (page 46 ISBN No: 0 9508564 4 4), Doug West points out
that it was originally envisaged that the hub of the community
would be based at the western end of Tankerton Road and along Pier Avenue. He also points out that it was
hoped that a Tankerton railway station would be built near the Ham
Shades Lane bridge on the London-Thanet line. Pier Avenue would
then have provided visitors with
an attractive approach to the shops and waterfront. There was
even a short metal pier jutting into the sea adjacent to Pier
Avenue for a short time -
between 1894 and 1913. It seems that, at the start of the
twentieth century, it was all coming together in a format
consistent with other resort towns around the English coastline.
As an aside, it is also worth drawing attention to a
recent discussion in our Visitors Book in which we considered a
long lost golf course that was opened on the lands of Highgate
Farm by the South Tankerton Estate Company. It was located on a
plot now occupied by the South Tankerton Housing Estate and the
John Wilson Industrial Estate - ie wedged between Clover Rise and
the Chestfield Road on the south side of the Old Thanet Way. From
there, it swept south west across The Ridgeway to Grasmere Road. The
club operated from 1908 until at least 1917 and its club house
(in Richmond Road) would have been just a few hundred yards from
the proposed Ham Shades Lane railway station. It seems that developers
may have had
grand plans for Tankerton - as a separate town along the lines of
a new Eastbourne.
So, was Tankerton a town or a suburb? Well, its
"feel" as a town never fully materialised.... and I
suspect that was because it had insufficient time to establish its own
identity and facilities before it was overtaken by events and outside influences.
As Doug West points out in his book, Pier Avenue's planned role as
a community hub was usurped by
the natural development of a commercial centre further west along
Tankerton Road - at Tankerton Circus. This centre included the enterprises of the Fitt family and other traders. Located
within a stone's throw of "the circus", the massive
Trocadero cinema re-affirmed that hub even if it wasn't around
early enough to determine
it. Meanwhile, Pier Avenue became something of a "misfit" road -
much broader and more lavish than its nearby neighbours.
of factors played a part here and it is worth relating
things to some of our recent articles on local railways (click
here for our Chat Column article of 10/11/08 on
the subject of the Canterbury & Whitstable Railway).
A Ham Shades Lane station may have provided access
for visitors from London and Thanet but day trippers from
Canterbury travelled on the Canterbury-Whitstable line and
alighted at a harbour station that had existed in various forms
since the line opened in 1830. That station was a long, long way
from Pier Avenue.
On 1 January 1915 things became even more
complicated when Whitstable mainline station (on the London-Thanet track) was relocated from Oxford Street to a
more easterly site in Railway Avenue and Old Bridge Road. The new
station had a linking path to a new Tankerton Halt platform
(opened on 1 July 1914) on the Canterbury-Whitstable line. These
new facilities could conveniently serve both Whitstable and
Tankerton..... and handle passengers from both railway lines. This
probably ensured that Tankerton's natural commercial
hub would develop a short distance away at "The Circus"
rather than at distant Pier Avenue. Any plan for a Pier Avenue centre and
a Ham Shades Lane station was now effectively "dead in the water".... and the communities
of Tankerton and Whitstable were destined to become inextricably
Of course, railway stations weren't the only
factor. Tankerton was planned and mapped out artificially. As a
result, it never really incorporated the full range of facilities
associated with a natural community. Of course, it
eventually gained the Troc but there were no C of E churches, no major community centres,
no true pubs and only limited recreational facilities for families. As a result, it remained dependent on
Whitstable for many key services. (Note: I believe the Kingsdown
Park area was originally an open space but even this was swiftly
developed). Furthermore, with infill pushing the eastern boundary
of Whitstable across the flood plain of the Gorrell Stream during the
1920s, any natural break between the communities disappeared
before Tankerton could emerge as a town in its own right.
Of course, historians may take a different view
am sure that we will debate the matter many times in the future!!!
Perhaps the answer is that Tankerton was a failed town....
but a successful suburb. This would be a fascinating
conclusion because it might demonstrate that planners don't have absolute control over their plans. Building an estate is
the easy bit because it involves manipulating bricks and mortar.
Building a complete town community is a bigger ball game
altogether. You simply can't add people to your cement mixer. Well, you
can but they may
not want to buy one of your houses after the experience!
John Harman recalls the Troc auditorium being
|I recall that it was an
extremely long theatre from front to back. In my mind, I
vaguely remember it being shortened and re-opened for a
Stories related to me by my mother also draw
attention to some oddities. She told me that the auditorium was a
massive hall with a flat floor and no tiered seating. She
also mentioned that the building served "as an indoor
skating rink at one time". I have never been able to tie
down the dates of the skating rink! Did it pre-date the cinema....
or did it operate in conjunction with the cinema? At the moment, I
simply don't know.
The Troc in
I am not sure if the Troc operated continuously
throughout the 1930s. However, a quick check of the films
mentioned in our Visitors Book would suggest that it did. For
example, the classic King Kong was released in 1933
and, regrettably Bright Eyes launched the Good Ship Lollipop in
We also have additional recollections that trace the
cinema's lifespan into the latter part of the decade....
|"I saw Snow White & the 7 at the
Troc but I can't remember when".
Tom Swire 2005
"In 1937, I also saw Snow White and her group of
seven. I was in the charge of my elder sister. As was the
case with all frightening scenes, like that horrible
witch, I would hide my face in her lap!"
John Harman 2005
The Troc and
Unlike some establishments, wartime brought a
temporary halt to the Troc's cinema activities. This was probably
prompted by the fact that it had a large flat floor suitable for
industry and access to the skilled services of the George
Fitt Motor/Engineering company...
|The Troc was closed at the outbreak of the war and used
by Fitts for war work.
It was then that a portion was walled off to house the
Fire Station and an Air Raid Warden Post.
The fire station remained a feature of Marine
Parade into the 1950s.
The cinema re-opened soon after the war with some celebration..... and a new name. The event is
recalled by a number of our readers....
|"I am pretty sure the Troc re-opened after the war
in the late 1940s and was renamed the Embassy
after major refurbishment. So, for a brief period, we had
three cinemas. I don't think the Embassy lasted more than
a couple of years."
"The Trocadera cinema opened, with much ballyhoo,
in, I think, the late forties. I do remember the opening
movie - "The Red Shoes" starring
Moira Shearer. However, the theatre didn't function for
long. I've never known why-- maybe lack of
"I am sure that I went to the cinema in Tankerton
when I was a lad. I must have been about 5 or 6 at the
time. That was after the war (1946/47).
I could be wrong but I am sure I went with an older
brother one Saturday afternoon. There was only a handful
of people in there. The entrance was by the tennis
I believe the renaming was marked by a large
"Embassy" sign high on the cinema's west wall -
overlooking the tennis courts. This remained long after the cinema
closed and it wasn't the only wall sign to
provide a reminder of the the Troc in later years.... as Mike
|On the wall of the cinema, overlooking the tennis
courts, was written something like "Matinees
3d" in red lettering. The rest was too faded
Loss of the
As yet, we do not know precisely when the cinema
closed. It may have survived into the very early 1950s but
certainly not beyond that.
The timing of the closure is interesting because
it is somewhat different from other cinemas nationwide. Most
establishments met their demise much later and were able to blame TV for the
loss of customers. By contrast, the Troc disappeared before the small
screen had started to dictate the layout of a "living"
Perhaps the Troc buckled under competition from
Whitstable's two major town centre cinemas - The Oxford (Oxford
Street) and the Argosy/Regal (High Street). Both competitors had
enlarged and refurbished their premises during the 1930s - The
Oxford in 1936 and the Argosy/Regal in 1937. By comparison, The
Troc may have been too big and too "out of the way" to
in Later Years...
I believe the Troc building may have been put to
industrial use after the cinema disappeared. (In fact I wonder if
it was used by Toogood & Jones who manufactured a well known
magnetic football game. If anyone, can confirm that, please let me
One idea for its redevelopment was quite
exciting.... but I am not sure that it was either official or even
very serious. It suggested that the Troc could become a sports
centre. With a seafront position, attractive entrance, vast hall
and nearby "all weather" tennis courts, it had a lot
going for it. However, I would imagine that costs would have been
The Pavilion complex was sold by the Fitt family
in the 1960s. The impressive Tankerton Grand Pavilion building
(fronting Marine Parade) was refurbished as seafront apartments -
minus the cinema entrance and fire station.
The Tankerton Grand Pavilion in,
Marine Parade during 2002.
No sign remains of the old cinema entrance
At the rear, the Troc auditorium was demolished
and cleared to provide apartment owners with private parking. One remnant of
it remains. The lower half of its western fascia
serves as a dividing wall between the car park and the adjacent
View from St Anne's Road in 2002. The
is the lower section of the Troc's old west fascia
Part of Our
As you can see, we have been able to link Ivan's
leaflet into so many of our other discussions and articles. It has
taken us a further step to Simply Whitstable's ultimate goal - a
global history of our town. I hope I live long enough to see it
Before we leave the subject, it is worth
mentioning the town's other cinemas....
||Located in Oxford Street, this
cinema began life in 1912 as the Oxford Picture
However, it was rebuilt in art deco style in
During the late 1950s, it introduced live talent
contests to boost custom. Through such innovations and a
better set of radiators, it
outlived its biggest rival (The Regal) and continued until
1984 when it became the Bingo Hall of today - a
transformation that has allowed it to retains its cinema
||Located in the High Street, it
was originally known as the "Picture
House". However, it was revamped in 1937 when it traded as the
Argosy. After World War II, its name
changed yet again ... to The Regal.
It closed in the 1960s and the building was refurbished as a
supermarket. The fascia was revamped and it lost its art deco
and cinema appearance However, it still managed a few
small pieces of Whitstable history.....by becoming the town's first major
supermarket (Fine Fare)... and providing the towns' first Chinese
Restaurant (The Jasmine Tree) on the upper floor. It may
also have been the first local retail outlet to join the
1960s craze of giving trading
stamps. In the case of Fine Fare, they were S&H Pink
Stamps rather than the better known Greenshield variety.
The supermarket has since changed hands and now trades as Somerfield.
|Palais de Luxe
||This was located at the corner
of Harbour and Victoria Streets. However, it was dual
purpose - trading primarily a theatre but with the ability
to show films.
It became Daveys Furniture store and, later, Fields
Furniture shop. It is now a small shopping mall with mews
properties at the rear.
||This was located on Tankerton
Slopes opposite the old Tankerton Hotel. It started life
as an open air stage but eventually became a modest,
utilitarian single storey
building. It was primarily a theatre for small variety productions
but we do have evidence that it showed some films in the late 1930s.
Why would the Lawn Pavilion become involved in the
cinema business when the Troc was just a few hundred yards
over the hill? Well, it could be that it was desperate to
keep afloat. On the other hand, was it because the Troc
had already closed down in the lead in to World War II?
In the 1950s, The Lawn Pavilion was used as an annex by
the nearby Dunlem School (Tankerton Road) before being demolished.
created by the demolition served as a picnic area and
children's playground. These facilities were popular with customers of
the Tankerton Hotel. Following closure of the hotel,
the land became no more than a grass extension of
||This was a relatively recent
innovation created by the Whitstable Oyster Fishery
Company - presumably in response to an upturn in the
cinema trade during the latter part of the twentieth
It traded around the late 1990s and early 2000s from
the upper floor of the old Oyster Store at the Horsebridge
and received a whole heap of plaudits (both within and
outside the town) for its historic location and unique
atmosphere. It also had the advantage of a bar at the rear
and the famous Oyster Company restaurant on the floor
It closed around the time of the Horsebridge
The Horsebridge redevelopment plans included an
option for a new cinema but there were no commercial takers. Thus,
when the Imperial Oyster facility closed, Whitstable was
left without a cinema and local "film goers" now make
use of multi-screen facilities at Canterbury, Ashford and Westwood
(Thanet). It's a far cry from the days when the Troc attempted to
attract folk FROM these areas back in '31.
On behalf of all Simply Whitstable readers I would
like to say a big thank you to Ivan Knowles for taking the toruble
to scan and forward such a lovely memento of Whitstable's history.
I would also like to thank John Harman, Peter Dalrymple, Michael Fitt, Tom Swire,
Geoff Kemp, Rosemary Gilbert, Brian Lindridge and Mike Bune whose
contributions have enabled us to piece
together and document some of the fascinating history of the old Troc.
Reader Comments on Troc
We have received the following messages on the
|Some years ago, I wrote to you and
said my sister had taken me to the Troc (or the Embassy as
it would have been by then) in the mid 40`s to see
Pinocchio. At the time, I think you said that you thought
it hadn`t been released until the 60`s with the Yawning
Man. I was wondering whether I had got it wrong but on TV
recently there was an advert that said Pinocchio was
celebrating its 70th birthday. I think that the Yawning
Man was added later.
Thanks, Rosemary. I must apologise if my earlier
remarks were in anyway misleading. I have found one past
Visitors Book entry in which I said...
"As for Pinocchio, I remember seeing it at
the Oxford.... when the Yawning Man had everybody going in
I was very young at the time that I first saw the film
and it would have been no later than the early-to-mid
As you rightly point out, Pinocchio was first released
much earlier - in 1940. It was Disney's second feature
length animation and it took a long time to make. This was
partly because it was one of the company's most
sophisticated productions. However, it was also because
Walt Disney was unhappy with some of the characters and
insisted on amendments. All this meant that the first
release incurred a loss.
Since then, it has been re-released many times. One
re-release date was in 1954 and I suspect that this was
when my parents took me to the Oxford. I am not sure how
much the film was altered for each release.
I hope to turn the Chat Column article into a permanent
item on the Troc and I will add your quote to it. I am
afraid that in trawling through the Visitors Book I missed
it first time around.
Looking at all the "Troc" adverts the item
that struck me was "Phone Whitstable 20"
near the top of the advert that featured "Western
Sound". I could just picture a rotary dial phone
complete with all the little clicks as it returned to zero
after each number dialed and perhaps some person, likely
the fountain of all knowledge, pulling out and reinserting
a cable on a switchboard.
Given the number was Whitstable 20, it must have been
quite early days for the local phone system.
Thanks, Bill. By the 1950s, things had become more
sophisticated around town. In our last Chat Column, we
featured adverts from Jacky Evans' copy of the local
Festival of Britain program. By then, George Fitt Motors
were using three 4-digit numbers - 2244 2245 and 2246.
However, Swalecliffe was still a little short on handsets
as the number of the Wheatsheaf public house was.... Chestfield
In those days, I suspect that there was a village
bobby. I wonder if his phone number was 99.... or,
perhaps, just 9.
We have been sent other collections of old ads and we
will try to feature some in forthcoming Chat Columns.
I remember going to my first panto in the Castle
Pavilion - it must have been 1949. As you say, it was
taken over by a school after that. It was Babes in the
Wood and Sandy Sandford was in it. He sang 'All I
want for Christmas is my two front teeth'. I
remember it because my younger sister was losing her baby
teeth and we used to sing it to wind her up!
|Our response: Thanks,
Roberta. Sandy Sandford was quite a character in
Whitstable and he appeared at a number of different
venues. (PS As it is some time since the Troc article was
published, I have replicated your message in the site
I went to the Lawn Pavilion before the war and
during the war. The usual star was Tommy Keele who appeared with
the Jollity Boys which included his wife and his son Alec.
He was also a glazed tiler & tiled most of the
bungalows in the estate at Swalecliffe where he lived. During the
war, he was called up & ran a concert party for the Green
Howards Regiment called the Green Tree Follies. He managed to hold
a concert at the Lawn Pavilion for the forces and Home Guard. My
Father Claud being an Home Guard Officer was invited. He was
a great friend of Tommy's. I also managed to be invited.......
|Our response: Thanks,
Derek. I have replicated your message in the Visitors Book
(entry date 19/5/09) along with that of Roberta Grieve
I was born in 1945 in Tankerton, and lived there
until I moved to London in 1963. We lived in Fitzroy Road, which
is the road going south on the other side of Tankerton Road from
the site of the Troc.
I remember going to a children's tea party in the Troc to
celebrate the Queen's coronation in 1953. We sat a a long
table for our tea, and everyone received a commemorative plate,
cup and saucer.
|Our response: Thanks, Susan. I reckon the Troc would have been ideal for a
Coronation party because of its large flat floor.
As it is some time since the above article was
published, I have replicated your message in the Visitors
Book to ensure that it gets a wide audience.
Oxford Cinema Whitstable
It would be good if this cinema was
re-opened, as Whitstable has none now. It is a good surviving
example of a 1930's Art Deco Auditorium , now so rare these days.
Having seen the destruction of the old
Odeon in Canterbury, we do not wish the same fate here. It
must be preserved as the Oxford contributes to the 1950's street
scene, which is the chief attraction of Whitstable. The cinema
would give our young people something to do. There is ample
car parking to the rear of the cinema. Admittedly the
building would have to be updated to comply with modern Building
Regulations and Health and Safety requirements, ie to install a
lift for disabled access to the former circle.
Our response: Many
thanks, John. It is a shame that a town of 30,000 people
has no cinema and it would be great to see the Oxford
showing films even if it was on a part time basis.
As the Troc article was published some
time ago, I have added your comments to the Visitors Book
(entry date 11/11/09) to allow others to comment on your
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