Girders that have obscured iconic Darlington building for half a century are removed

Darlington and Stockton Times: The beautiful, albeit unloved, facade of the former Majestic cinema is visible for the first time in half a century The beautiful, albeit unloved, facade of the former Majestic cinema is visible for the first time in half a century

EYESORE girders that have obscured an iconic art deco building for half a century are being torn down.

The thick metal bars that blight the front of the former Riley’s Snooker Club building in Darlington are being removed on the orders of its owner Devlin Hunter who wants to restore the building’s original 1930s features.

Mr Hunter, a property developer from Darlington, said people stopped to take photographs as workmen dismantled the girders last night and today (Tuesday, April 1).

Many Darlington residents have also taken to social media sites to express their delight that part of the building’s original facade is now visible for the first time since the 1960s.

The work is part of an ongoing project by Mr Hunter who wants to convert the building into a multi-purpose leisure venue.

The building, which stands at the Bondgate entrance to Darlington town centre, first opened in 1932 as the Majestic cinema before becoming an Odeon in 1945.

It closed in 1981 and remained empty for five years until it was converted into a snooker club.

Mr Hunter hopes that when the restoration is complete, the venue will be capable of hosting a range of functions such as live music, private parties and wedding receptions.

Comments (5)

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6:23pm Tue 1 Apr 14

Spy Boy says...

Finally, now let's lose the black paint. This is a wonderful project for the town. So much better than the usual negatives thrust upon us.
Finally, now let's lose the black paint. This is a wonderful project for the town. So much better than the usual negatives thrust upon us. Spy Boy
  • Score: 37

5:14am Wed 2 Apr 14

SirLance says...

Well done Mr Hunter! The removal of an eyesore for the return to beauty! I went to the Odeon as a young lad to watch a late showing of 'Easy Rider' ! I didn't have any motor bike never mind a 'chopper' I had to walk home to Hurworth. Quite safe in those days too!
Well done Mr Hunter! The removal of an eyesore for the return to beauty! I went to the Odeon as a young lad to watch a late showing of 'Easy Rider' ! I didn't have any motor bike never mind a 'chopper' I had to walk home to Hurworth. Quite safe in those days too! SirLance
  • Score: 15

8:55am Wed 2 Apr 14

sorrybutyoujustwastedfivesecondsofyourlifedecipheringthisname says...

This is great. Finally a project in Darlington that doesn't involve destroying the old to make way for the new and tacky.

Hope the business venture proves to be a successful one.
This is great. Finally a project in Darlington that doesn't involve destroying the old to make way for the new and tacky. Hope the business venture proves to be a successful one. sorrybutyoujustwastedfivesecondsofyourlifedecipheringthisname
  • Score: 14

2:43pm Wed 2 Apr 14

Lnorthcoop says...

Well done, nice to see a developer that cares about the local area rather than just the money
Well done, nice to see a developer that cares about the local area rather than just the money Lnorthcoop
  • Score: 7

4:07pm Wed 2 Apr 14

cushybutterfield says...

Its shocking over the years the number of lovely historic buildings that have been 'torn down and some 'left to rot' by sheer ignorant pathetic mismanagement in some (not all) North East of England Councils. Yet many shocking eyesores and 'open space' dumps are ignored and left for years and in some cases decades.
Its shocking over the years the number of lovely historic buildings that have been 'torn down and some 'left to rot' by sheer ignorant pathetic mismanagement in some (not all) North East of England Councils. Yet many shocking eyesores and 'open space' dumps are ignored and left for years and in some cases decades. cushybutterfield
  • Score: 5

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