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After visiting this place at least 4 or 5 times within a couple of weeks I managed to gather some footage from my camera to throw together a video, I didn't spent that much time editing as I am sure you can tell! The place was slightly different on our first visit alot of stuff had been moved around or been pikey'd by the time I recorded the footage! Cheers for watching
Explored with Raz, but i have revisited and met various others. I apologise in advance for the amount of photos but I LOVED this location. Background; The Crescent Cinema stands on the corner of Ropergate and Front Street and was designed by local architects Garside and Pennington. It opened on 2nd November 1926 and within the complex was the 2 tier, 1,190 seat cinema which had a fully equipped stage with associated dressing rooms for such plays as Dirty Dancing, and a cafe and a substantial dance hall which in its day hosted balls for the mayor. It was taken over by the Leeds based Star Cinemas chain in 1944, (as was the Alexandra Cinema in town) and as the popularity of cinemas waned the Alexandra Cinema was the property turned over to bingo in 1961 with films continuing at the Crescent Cinema. However when the Alexandra Cinema was sold off for redevelopment in 1971 Star sub-divided the Crescent Cinema forming a bingo hall in the former stalls and a new 412 cinema in the balcony that, like many of their cinemas, was renamed Studio 1. Further changes in ownership to the Cannon Group took place, bingo was superseded by snooker and the Cannon Cinema closed in 1993. It has not been used since although the snooker continues and a school of dance occupies the former ballroom. The old cinema is the upper tier of the grand film hall and is complete with full projector set and refraction mirror. The Explore; If i was to set the scene of our endevours well, it would start with something like this; "One dreery night, with the clouds covering the moon and the rain whistling in the cool wind. We approached the old oaken doors set back in the darkness of the alcove from the amber glow of the street lights..." But this is not a story. We arrived on a pleasant September evening with the sun just going down, after a stealthy entrance and a quick stoop i was instantly impressed by this place. Having been in ABC in Wakefield, I expected a pigeon shit filled, asbestos topped death trap half flooded in water that smells a lot like the swamp from Never Ending Story... However this was not the case and it is in fact filled with some of the coolest little gems ive ever seen. When myself and raz were first exploring this place we felt very very paranoid and im not entirely sure why. At every sound this old creeky building made we would stop dead still and hold our breath. In hindsight i wish id have been recording all the way round as it would have made for some hilairious and strangley fitting footage of us creeping round a derelict theatre to Benny Hill. At one point we made it into a tunnel system which we at first hoped to be the fabled "Market Run" but obviously its not as i am writing the report on the Cinema rather than still trying to find my way out after stumbling across the many beer cellers we know to be down there Over the last few days i must have spent around 4 hours just moving room to room taking it all in and really experimenting with light painting. I hope this stays in NP for some time as the minute it comes out into the public forums the local scroats will be in the rob the place blind and leave behind well... The ABC Theatre, Wakefield. Heres some of the finer areas Nice one of the dance hall to finish If you got this far, thanks for reading
While doing a bit of research I found a couple of good leads. This was the first one I followed up. Rolling solo an early start got me here in full darkness. As I was going in with no info and didnt really want a wasted three hour drive. Quite a bit of cctv around but I worked out a reasonable route through the grounds and luckily it worked out all good. The Crescent was designed by John Carr and built in the late 18th century Funded by the Fifth Duke Of Devonshire as the centre piece for his spa Scheme. Originally two hotels one closed early in the 20th century and became council offices and library closed in 1992. The St Anns hotel closed in 1992 and has been empty since. Anyway on with some photos. Luckily most of it is lit inside so I was shooting straight away. 1 2 Shame the stairs are covered I think they could of been rather nice. 3 4 So I had kind of forgotten what had drawn me to this building. It was seeming a bit stripped inside. Then I was reminded as I walked through the doors at the top of the round staircase. 5 6 7 8 9 10 A couple more bits were worth shooting 11 So it turns out there was more than I expected here... Right next door is or was a natural water spring the current builing was built in 1853 and was altered in the 1920s. The pump room was last used in the 1970's. Some of the building was used as the tourist information Centre. 12 13 14 15 Who needs the jungle school when you can have a jungle pool. 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 Thanks for looking I hope you enjoyed.