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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

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Albums: Harringay's Cinemas

Comment by Richard Woods on February 10, 2013 at 19:04

Aha that's it - fire escape was at the rear on the right of this pic. easy climb to roof terrific place for a pa shoter.... My Gran lived in Langham Court behind the bus garage alongside this.

Comment by Mrs Eileen Corbitt on March 6, 2020 at 19:07

During the war, I remember every Tuesday night Mum and Dad would go to the Ritz cinema and we would queue up outside, even through the air-raid warnings, hoping there would be no bombs. Afterwards, walking along Green Lanes to Allison Road, where we lived, we would stop at the fish and chip shop and I would have a portion of chips with vinegar and salt wrapped up in the historic newspaper and eat them as we walked home.

Also went there on Saturday mornings for the children's club.

Seems so long ago now but very clear in my memory.

Also went to the flea pit (Coliseum) at the bottom of our road a couple of times on Saturday mornings but it wasn't, even then, considered very good.

The other cinema was the ritz just by the common by Turnpike Lane but not very often.

Very rarely we went to the Finsbury Park Astoria with all the Spanish looking scenes.

Best of all was our weekly visit to the Finsbury Park Empire where we saw so many famous stars of the time. I've always considered it to have been a privilege of my past. The stars were so famous and too many to name.

Eileen Corbitt (Webb)

Comment by Mrs Eileen Corbitt on March 6, 2020 at 19:08

Sorry the other Cinema was the Regal not the Ritz.

Comment by Gerry N on July 23, 2021 at 0:24

I wish I knew exactly where this was ?  and where the adjoining bus gareage was

Comment by Hugh on July 23, 2021 at 7:07

Gerry, the entrance was on the corner of Carlingford Road. It’s probably easier to orient yourself from this photo, looking across Duckett’s Common, down Carlingford Road. All the shop buildings on the left of that photo are still standing.

This Google street view might help. The whole bulk of the cinema has gone. But, on the main road, only the corner block has changed, having been replaced with a building matching the style of the tube station. Take one step down Carlingford road on the map and look to the left, you'll see where the bulk of the cinema was.

Comment by Geraldine on July 23, 2021 at 7:11

Eileen Corbitt - my experience was almost identical to yours.  The Coliseum for the everyday stuff, the Ritz was a step up and the Finsbury Park Empire the icing on the cake.  Saturday mornings were usually the Collie but I still remember the words of the Ritz song, sung to the tune of Blaze Away.

We are the boys and girls well-known as

Minors of the ABC

And every Saturday we line up

To see the films we like and shout aloud with glee

We love to laugh and have a sing-song

Such a happy crowd are we

We're all pals together

We're minors of the ABC

Comment by andrew simmonds on July 23, 2021 at 7:53

My work colleagues are all looking at me as if I've gone crazy, and wondering what this strange song is that I have just started singing. Great memories, I went every Saturday. I only went to Finsbury park Astoria once to see Dr. No with my Dad. I think he wanted to go more than I did but it started a lifelong love for all things Bond.

Comment by Richard Woods on July 23, 2021 at 12:43

At a guess Eileen and Geraldine one of the louts sitting somewhere in the Ritz all those years ago was me and my mates from the Frobisher area. I remember the song - and the guy (Mr McCarthy?) who used to come on stage. I think he was the manager in fact. The place was packed. My first love was a girl named Joan Miller as I recall. I was about 10 at the time so 1953 ish. 

I lived three doors from The Regal so that was a regular haunt. We also went to the Astoria and the Gaumont at Wood Green.  For years I was banned from the Colly due to its unsavoury reputation. Then in about 1959 or so I took my young brother Roger (aged 10-11) and guess what - the chap in the next seat exposed himself! I leaned over and gave him a whack and he fled. I never told my parents as we would never have been allowed back!

Comment by Richard Woods on July 23, 2021 at 13:00

PS - that was sung to the tune I think of We are the Ovaltinees, happy boys and girls. 

Comment by Geraldine on July 23, 2021 at 13:12

Hello Richard,  No, it's not the Ovalteenies tune.  The words don't fit.  Here is a link to Blaze Away if it works. The Minors of the ABC tune comes in at l min.10 secs


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