Book launch at Leiston Film Theatre

Oct 2013


A new book commemorating 100 years of entertainment at the Leiston Film Theatre is due to be published at the end of November.

The book, entitled Spilling the Popcorn has been written by Leiston Film Theatre manager Wayne Burns and details the story of Suffolk’s oldest surviving purpose built cinema and the various exploits of its manager.

The book will be launched on Saturday 30th November with two separate events in Leiston and Aldeburgh. The first will incorporate a fund raising coffee morning at Leiston Film Theatre between 10.00am and 1.00pm in aid of Leiston Film Theatre Support Club, who have raised in excess of £140,000 since 1992 to keep the Council owned venue open. The second book launch will be held at Tony Pick’s Photographic Gallery in Aldeburgh between 2.00pm and 5.00pm as part of Aldeburgh’s Christmas Lights event.

Wayne is looking forward to seeing his completed book. “With the cinema’s centenary in 2014, it seemed the perfect opportunity to share the fascinating tale of one of the country’s oldest surviving independent cinemas. I am especially grateful to the numerous colleagues who have kindly donated their time to help me research the remarkable story behind our cherished venue.” he said.

An accurate account of the cinema’s history has been achieved from studying historic papers, cuttings and interviews with various people who had been connected with the venue over the years. The book reveals the origins of Leiston Picture House in 1914, the arrival of the ‘talkies’ and colour film, as well as the incredible popularity during the 1940’s and 1950’s and the uncertain times and decline during the 1960’s and 1970’s. The book also details the cinema’s rescue from the threat of closure in 1976, its remarkable transformation from a neglected ‘flea-pit’ into a versatile venue during the 1990’s and its remarkable revival in recent years, featuring a selection of nostalgic images of Leiston Picture House throughout the decades.

Wayne has enjoyed a love affair with stage and screen from an early age. From his cinema in the garden shed and his time at Aldeburgh Cinema, to 21 successful years at Leiston Film Theatre, the book shares his various experiences spanning 25 years in the cinema business.

Leiston Film Theatre’s centenary celebrations will include a programme of 100 special events and promotions to commemorate 100 years of cinema in Leiston. Two years in the planning, the celebrations range from the bizarre to the magnificent, with an opportunity for everyone to join in the year long anniversary. The venue has also recently taken delivery of Cheeky the Centenary Chimp, who will be present at both book launch’s to keep the younger ones amused.

Spilling the Popcorn, written by Wayne Burns and published by Leiston Press, is now available to pre-order from Leiston Film Theatre, priced £11.99 (£14.99 incl. P&P). To order your copy, please telephone: 01728 830549 or click here to complete our contact form and our box office staff will be pleased to contact you to discuss your order.

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