Curzon Cinema Collection
If you have visited the Curzon cinema recently, you cannot have failed to notice the fascinating array of cinema and home movie equipment on display throughout the building.
The Curzon Cinema Collection was formerly displayed in the otherwise unused warehouse at the rear of the cinema. When this space was needed for other purposes a new home had to be found for the items. Some of the exhibits that had been on loan were returned to their owners, but the majority of the collection remained intact and was removed to the main cinema building and remains one of the most important collections of its kind in the country.
Since that time, a team of volunteers have been busy identifying, recording, photographing and labelling the several hundred items currently held and supplementing the existing records to ensure that the general public and others with an interest in the projected picture have access to a complete and comprehensive database covering all aspects of cinematic history.
One of the most interesting recent acquisitions is a cinematograph, which was produced as a one-off in the late 1920’s by Mr William Mason who lived in a tiny village in Shropshire. As there was little or no entertainment to be had, Mr Mason built the cinematograph and used it to provide entertainment in local village halls for about ten years, showing first slides, and then films which he had collected. The cinematograph was in use until the 1930’s since which time has been in storage.
The next phase of the operation will be to develop an interactive database, to be hosted on the Curzon’s website, and therefore freely available to the general public.
A limited number of exhibits are in working condition, and we are working with experts to revive a variety of projectors.
If you are interested in getting know and learning to maintain these artefacts, and can volunteer a little time each week, the Curzon would love to hear from you.