Roy Dart

I started in the business at the early age of 12. My mother was an usherette at the Academy Leytonstone East London which also had another cinema, the State just along the road. This was in the early 50’s when TV was not in everyones home so they relied on the newsreels in the cinema. The Academy and the State shared the newsreel and I was employed (unofficially as I was too young) as a newsrunner. I used to rewind the film when it finished at the Academy and then walk up to the State for their showing. I was very interested how things worked and the chiefs showed me how to do a change over etc. By the age of 14 I was (again unofficially) doing holiday reliefs. The chain of cinemas was H&G enterprises and they also had the Savoy Plumpstead, the Rio Greengate, a cinema in Seven Kings near Ilford, the name escapes me a the moment but I believe it also became the State, and also the Imperial Portobello Rd, now the Electric. There are amusing stories form all these which if you are interested I will relate.

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