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Memories of the 1950/60s

North Street: Pavilion Cinema on the left
From the private collection of Jennifer Drury

The flea pit cinema

I was brought up in Portslade and spent a lot of time around the North Street/ Trafalgar Street area in the late fifties to mid sixties. Reading the Portslade memories here on the website has reminded me of things I thought I had forgotten. I do remember The Pavilion Cinema, North Street; it was truly a flea pit with broken seats and it was pretty grotty.

Do you remember these cinemas? Please share your Portslade memories by posting a comment below.

Saturday morning pictures

Later on my friends and I used to go to The Rothbury in Franklyn Road. This was a much nicer place and not at all like the flea pit in North Street. I have an abiding memory of the manager shining his torch on unruly kids at the Saturday morning cinema club. We watched films like The Lone Ranger and Batman and Robin. Getting  very excited we would shout and jump up and down.

A very strange shop

In the 1960s I worked at the decorators merchants on the South side of Wellington Road. It was opposite a shop that was reputed to be selling….ahem..[hushed voice] marital aids. I was too young and innocent to know. But I did frequent the Feedwell Cafe in North Street, who did a memorable bacon sandwich for 1s 6d. The area was dominated then by Flexers paper sack factory.

Comments about this page

  • I lived in Norway Street, Portslade in 1949 and was a regular visitor to The Rothbury. I enjoyed the adventures of Superman – a serial which was the principal attraction for the Saturday morning film buffs.

    By Alan Scales (06/07/2015)
  • My dad took me to the Pavilion to see “The Thing”. It scared the hell out of me. I saw it on TV last night and I wondered how I could possibly have been afraid. Even the remake I found a bit feeble.The Rothbury was definitely an upgrade and we would go to the matinee on Saturday to see Roy Rogers and Tom Mix. An upgrade to the Rothbury was the Granada in Hove where I remember seeing “War of the Worlds” and “High and Mighty” on Sunday afternoons.

    By Barry Flahey (10/07/2015)
  • I still remember the “bughole” as we used to call it, with the access to toilets each side of the screen, the smell of the gents is still with me today. Rich people used to go to the Rothbury.

    By John Allwright (04/02/2022)
  • I lived in St Aubyns Road and loved going to the Rothbury. Sometimes I used to sit through the programme twice or even three times. Once my mother came to fetch me after I had spent at least 4 hours in the place. The usherette knew exactly where I was sitting.

    By Nick Burdett (05/02/2022)
  • The first two paragraphs could have been written by me, although they weren’t. I well remember the Pavilion and Rothbury cinemas, a far cry from the multiplexes of today.
    I also worked at the decorator’s merchant in Wellington Road . I may well have known him. Those bacon sandwiches from the Feedwell cafe were a thing to remember. Happy days.

    By Daniel C (20/02/2024)

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