What our picture houses used to look like: 100 years of British cinema design in photographs

The BFI have recently put up on their website a collection of archive photographs that showcases the evolution of British cinema architecture over 100 years.

This is what the Empire Leicester Square used to be:

  The Empire Theatre (now The Empire Leicester Square), London, 1959

The Empire Theatre (now The Empire Leicester Square), London, 1959


Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.