The Theatres Trust

Embassy (Peterborough)

  • Theatre ID
  • Built / Converted
  • Dates of use
    • 1937 - 1980: Theatre
    • 1955 - 1989: Cinema
    • 1996: Pub
  • Current state
  • Current use
    Licensed premises
  • Address
    Broadway, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, England


This is the only theatre built by a noted cinema architect. Two of Nye’s cinemas, Berkhamstead and Esher are listed buildings. A difficult site required that the stage occupied the most visible part of the building with a wide fan-shaped auditorium behind, and with the main entrance in the rear corner of the site. The narrow stage end has been altered with a canopy now wrapped around the corner. Originally the horizontal band extended only to the limits of the vertical fins and below this was the stage door and, in the centre, the high scene dock door. Inside the wide auditorium there was one steep circle and stalls. The front of the circle was close to the stage and the sightlines excellent. Restrained Art Deco decoration and lighting resulted in a pleasing, if cinema-ish, theatre. Dressing rooms, six floors of them (14 in total) were at the apex of the building above the scene dock door. The cinema was tripled in 1981, closed in 1989 and, after a long dark period, was converted to a pub in 1996. The present pub entrance appears to take up the former stage as a bar area.

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  • Other names
    ABC, Cannon, Academy
  • Events
    • Owner/Management: Bancroft Circuit
    • 1937 - 1980 Use: Theatre
    • 1937 Design/Construction:
      • Mollo & Egan - Consultant: Architectural Decoration Including Plasterwork
      • F H Pride (Clapham) Ltd - Consultant: Lighting
    • 1937 Design/Construction:
      • David Evelyn Nye - Architect
    • 1946 Owner/Management: Peterborough Amusements Ltd
    • 1955 - 1989 Use: Cinema
    • 1965 Owner/Management: ABC
    • 1981 Alteration: Tripled
      • Unknown - Architect
    • 1996 Alteration: converted to pub
      • Mason Richards Partnership - Architect
    • 1996 Use: Pub
  • Capacities
    • Original: 1484
  • Listings
    • Grade Not listed
  • Stage type
    • Proscenium
  • Dimensions
    • Stage dimensions: Depth: 8.84m Width: 17.7m
    • Proscenium width: 12.8m
    • Height to grid: 17.89m
    • Orchestra pit: Original for 28

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