Picture Theatres A-Z

Picture Theatres, Townsville – The History

Note: Some picture theatres were multi-purpose and had live shows as well as showing movies. Sometimes the programme for an evening’s entertainment might be a live local artist performing on stage before the feature movies were shown. Most picture theatres employed a pianist to render the music for the silent movies, but some employed a small four or five piece orchestra.
The Theatre Royal was, in the early years, the only closed in theatre with a roof. Most of the other theatres were open air or Stadiums as they were known with very limited under cover section for patrons during wet weather.

(In Alphabetical Order)

Arcadian Garden Picture Theatre,
1948 – Arcadia, Magnetic Island.

Astor Theatre
1953 – Astor Picture Theatre, Palmerston St, near the corner of Grosvenor St, Currajong was opened Mon 28 Sep 1953. (TDB Tue 29 Sep 1953)

1990 BCC4 and later BCC5 opened in 1990 on the corner of Sturt & Blackwood Sts, the same site as the demolished Twin Cinemas. Owned by Birch, Carroll, and Coyle

City Pictures
1918 – City Pictures, Flinders St, City, a newly built theatre, opened Mar 1918 (mention in TDB Mon 18 Mar 1918)

Civic Theatre
1953 Civic Theatre (ex South Townsville Talkies), re-opened Sat 23 May 1953. (TDB)
(Not to be confused with the present day Townsville Civic Theatre in Boundary St).

Drive In Theatre North Ward
1940 Drive In Theatre, Sports Reserve, North Ward opened Thurs 14 Nov 1940 (TDB)

Empire Picture Palace
1914 Empire Picture Palace opened, next to Empire Hotel, Plume Street, South Townsville, on Sat 19 Dec 1914. (TDB)

Esquire Theatre
1948 Esquire Theatre opening Sat 17 Jul 1948 (TDB)

Estate Theatre
1938 Estate Theatre, Railway Ave, opened Sat 27 Aug 1938. (TDB).

Event Cinemas
2014 – Event Theatres opened 12 Dec 2014
BCC4 – BCC5 became Events Cinemas and later moved to Little Fletcher St.

Gaiety Pictures
1915 GAIETY PICTURES, Hebb’s Stadium, Denham St. opened Sat 13 Mar 1915 (TDB Sat 13 Mar 1915)

Garbutt Picture Theatre
1948 Garbutt Theatre (Gordon St Garbutt??) opened 13 Jul 1948.

Holiday Theatre
1948 – Picnic Bay, Magnetic Island.

Hyde Park Theatre
1927 Hyde Park Theatre (ex Minna;s Park Theatre) re-opened Sat 10 Dec 1927.

Lyceum Pictures
1912 – LYCEUM PICTURES on the corner of Sturt & Stokes St. mentioned in TDB Thurs 4 Jan 1912.

Magnetic Island
TDB Fri 21 Nov 1947
Council Monthly Meeting
Picture Theatre, Magnetic Island: Recommend
that no objection be offered to the
erection of a picture theatre at Picnic
Bay and one at Arcadia.

TDB Sat 28 Feb 1948
T.H.Thorley, picture theatre, Arcadia: Recommend that the request for permission to erect a projection box be approved.

TDB Sat 19 Jun 1948
Sturgess. H, picture theatre. Picnic Bay: Report having
made an Inspection of the premises and having agreed to grant
registration, conditionally that the
requirements stipulated by the City Health Inspector are carried out.

Arcadian Garden Theatre.
TDB Sat 1 April 1950
(Magnetic Island)
To-Night – 7.45 p.m.
Lucile Watson, Gloria de Haven in
Plus Passing Parade and News.

Holiday Theatre Picnic Bay?
1948 TDB Sat 19 Jun 1948
Sturgess. H, picture theatre. Picnic Bay: Report having
made an Inspection of the premises and having agreed to grant
registration, conditionally that the
requirements stipulated by the City Health Inspector are carried out.

Minna’s Theatre
1925 TDB Sat 27 Jun 1925 Stanley Theatre became Minna’s Theatre, Stanley St., re-opening Sat 4 July 1925

Minna’s Park Theatre
1927 TDB Mon 16 May 1927 A NEW THEATRE Miss Minna’s Venture at Hermit Park.and on galleries running each side of the theatre. (advertised as Minna’s Park Theatre) (Open air).

Morrow Pictures
1925 – TDB Sat 22 Aug 1925 MORROW PICTURES (ex Union Pictures) at the Waterside Workers’ Hall opening.

Norline Drive-In Theatre
1957 – Norline Drive-In Theatre, 563 Ingham Rd, Garbutt, opened Fri 27 Sep 1957.

North Ward Pictures
1927 – TDB Sat 16 Jul 1927 NORTH WARD PICTURES will present their initial programme at the Scouts Hall to-night.

Olympia Theatre
1912 OLYMPIA THEATRE opened in the leased Stanley Stadium by Birch & Carroll (running on Mon 8 Jan 1912 according to TDB)
1912 OLYMPIA THEATRE then opened in the previous Lyceum cnr Sturt & Stokes St. and opened on Sat 23 Nov 1912 (TDB Sat 23 Nov 1912)

Olympic Theatre
1873 Olympic Theatre – opened NYE 31 Dec 1873 – The Rockhampton Bulletin Tues 13 Jan 1874 said the Cleveland Bay Express had this article from Townsville.

Omnimax Theatre
Flinders Street, East.
1987 Omnimax opened.
2012 Omnimax closed.

Palladium Theatre
1947 Palladium Theatre on the corner of Hervey’s Range Rd (now Ross River Road) and Charlotte St. opened Tues 23 Dec 1947 (TDB Tues 23 Dec 1947)

Palm Court Theatre
1927 Sat 17 Dec 1927 Palm Court Theatre advert grand opening this night (ex Minna’s Theatre, Stanley St)

Paramount Theatre
1918 Paramount Theatre (ex City Pictures) re-opened Sat 21 Dec 1918. (TDB).

Plaza Theatre
1938 Plaza Theatre, Echlin St corner of North St. opened Tues 13 Sep 1938. (TDB)

Reading Cinemas
1996 – Reading Cinemas – Cannon Park, 6 Cinemas opened on 26/12/1996

Regent Theatre
1932 Regent Theatre, (ex Hyde Park Theatre), Charters Towers Rd. re-opened Wed 12 Oct 1932 under new management of Mr J. A. Feldt. (TDB).

Rex Picture Theatre
1947 Oonoonba – TDB Fri 20 Jun 1947 reports: Council Meeting (in part)
Stortenbecker, S. J. — erection Picture Theatre, Oonoonba. (REX THEATRE, Abbott St.)

Roxy Theatre
1934 The Roxy Theatre (ex Paramount Theatre), Flinders St. officially opened. Sat 7 Jul 1934 (TDB).

South Townsville Pictures
1926 South Townsville Pictures (ex Morrow’s Pictures) re-opened Sat 21 Aug 1926 (TDB Sat 21 Aug 1926)

Stanley Stadium
1910 Stanley Stadium behind Lowth’s Hotel in Stanley St. in Townsville mentioned in Cairns Post Sat 22 Oct 1910.

Stuart Drive-In Theatre
1968 – Stuart Drive-In Theatre, Bruce Highway, Cluden, next to Stuart Creek, opened Oct 1968.

Strand Theatre
1916 Strand Pictures (Ex Townsville Picture Theatre, Flinders St. West.) re-opens Sat 12 Feb 1916 (TDB Sat 12 Feb 1916)

Sun Pictures
1927 TDB Mon 13 Jun 1927 THE SUN PICTURES. A BRILLIANT INAUGURATION, for the opening of the Sun Pictures at Hermit Park., Charters Towers Rd, opposite Royal Oak Hotel.

Theatre Royal
1900 – THEATRE ROYAL in Flinders St opened by Governor Lord Lamington on Mon 12 Nov 1900. The Theatre Royal showed pictures when booked by travelling picture show companies but when not booked for this or live performances showed pictures as the Royal Pictures. Theatre Royal leased by Mr T.V.Coyle

Tivoli Pictures
1915 Tivoli Pictures (the renamed Stanley Pictures) opened Sat 31 July 1915 (TDB Fri 30 Jul 1915)

Townsville Picture Theatre
1914 Townsville Picture Theatre, Flinders St West opened on the evening of Thurs 28 May 1914 (TDB)

Twin Cinemas
1971 Twin Cinemas, corner of Sturt St and Blackwood St opened Thurs 26 Aug 1971
Owned by Birch, Carroll, and Coyle

Union Pictures
1925 TDB Sat 21 Feb 1925 Union Pictures (First mention of Union Pictures held at the Waterside Workers Hall)

Warrina Cinemas
1973 – The Warrina Cinema/Cineplex is on Dalrymple Road, Currajong, near the corner of Bayswater Road. Opened in 1973.

Wintergarden Theatre
TDB Sat 4 Jun 1927 WINTERGARDEN OPENS TO-NIGHT. Owned by Birch, Carroll, and Coyle. Sturt St, between Blackwood and Stanley Sts.
First Townsville Talkies installation and opened at Wintergarden Theatre Mon 5 Aug 1929.

Townsville Picture Theatres Time Line

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