Opening looms for new £3 million Bexhill Wetherspoons

Wetherspoon, Bexhill.

L-R  Michael Selmes (Shift Manager), Becky Dunkley (Pub Manager) and Carly Evans (Shift Leader) SUS-170607-104618001
Wetherspoon, Bexhill. L-R Michael Selmes (Shift Manager), Becky Dunkley (Pub Manager) and Carly Evans (Shift Leader) SUS-170607-104618001

After months of work, the new Bexhill Wetherspoons is set to open in just over a week’s time, with the creation of 70 new jobs.

The company has spent £3 million developing the outlet, which is due to open on July 18, on the site of the former cinema building in Western Road.

The pub, which will be called The Picture Playhouse, will be managed by Becky Dunkley.

The pub is named after the well-known former cinema, which occupied number 38, officially opened by the Duchess of Norfolk, in 1921.

The Playhouse was operated by the Randolph Richards Kinema Playhouse circuit until 1966, when it was sold to Classic Cinemas.

In 1974, it changed ownership, was renamed the Curzon and subdivided horizontally with the stalls becoming a bingo club and the circle a cinema.

In 1988, the downstairs became a shop and antique market, with the upstairs cinema retained, finally trading as the Redstack Playhouse theatre and cinema venue from 2006 until 2008.

Number 36 was the site of the Cinema De Luxe, which opened in 1913, accommodating 625 patrons in the latest tip-up seating. It closed in 1921 following the opening of The Picture Playhouse.

It later became a garage and petrol station and then the long-time print works of the Bexhill Observer.

The new pub will be open from 8am until midnight Sunday to Thursday and 8am until 1am Friday and Saturday. Food will be served all day every day until 11pm and accompanied children will be welcome for family dining up until 9pm.

The Picture Playhouse will specialise in real ales, as well as craft and world beers, serving a wide range of different draught ales, as well as bottled beers, including those from local and regional brewers.

The pub will be wheelchair accessible.

The Picture Playhouse features one ground floor bar, a large roof top terrace and a small outside space to the front of the pub, where there will be a smoking area.

Historical photos and artwork and images of local scenes and characters, will be displayed in the pub, together with information boards relating to local history. Two specially commissioned artworks pieces by Sineid Codd, The Picture Playhouse and Silverscreen Stars, are also on display.

The new pub features numerous brass art deco features over and inset into joinery and balustrades.

Original projectors, found on site, are prominently displayed and much of the original cornicing has been saved and restored.

The unique carpet design is also a vibrant art deco pattern and other features include a giant window, to the rear of the building, to bring views and daylight through the proscenium arch, where the cinema screen would have been.

Manager Becky Dunkley said: “Myself and my team are looking forward to welcoming customers into the pub and we are confident that it will be a great addition to the Bexhill community.”