The history of the Majestic.
The story of the Majestic began in 1922, following the Great War. The Majestic was built and opened as a “super cinema” for the people of Leeds, seating up to 3,000 people in a fan-shaped auditorium. The silent romantic drama ‘Way Down East’ was the first film to be shown, attracting 50,000 people in its first week.
In 1932, the cinema installed earphones for the hard of hearing after the coming of ‘talkies’ in the film industry. The building also boasted a restaurant seating 300, plus a basement ballroom. It remained as a cinema for nearly 50 years before eventually opening as a bingo hall in 1969.
Visualisation courtesy of Yorkshire Evening Post.
Work began on Majestic in 2012 to convert the space for mixed retail and leisure, and the project was nearly complete before a fire erupted in late 2014, destroying the roof and interior of the building.
In February of 2018, it was announced that construction work would be taking place to “bring vibrant new life” to the Majestic, following a £40m investment from Leeds-based property firm Rushbond.
Aura Conservation Ltd have been appointed to carry out in–situ façade repairs, replacement of terracotta faience, cleaning and re-pointing, replacement of rainwater goods and finally to replace the urns and statues which have now been removed from the balustrade.
From archived records and photographs, we have been able to research the original detail. The urns appear to have been removed in the late 1930’s and subsequently replaced with a much simpler profile. Research of the originals reveals that they were quite detailed, which is much in line with other notable Listed buildings in Leeds.
Andrew Sinclair of Ridgeway Sculptures has been commissioned to sculpture the urns and statues to their original detail in a cast stone to match the faience in appearance. Andrew is recognised as a master of world class figurative sculpture. I’m sure you will agree they will look beautiful!
Aura Conservation Ltd are absolutely delighted to be part of the restoration of this beautiful iconic landmark and our works are due to be complete early 2020, so if you do anything next year, make sure its going to see our handy work of bringing this stunning building back to life for us to enjoy for many years to come.
The services we provide for you at aura conservation
Stone, Brick, Cast Stone, Terracotta, Sculpture, Statuary, Bronze Statuary.
Traditional Roof Slating, , Roof Features & Drainage, Lead Protection, Lead work, Zinc Copper & Stainless Steel, Steeplejacks and Lightning Protection.
Painting & Decorating, Decorative Plasterwork, Tiling, Timber Flooring.
Services & Treatment
Principle Contractor on several trade refurbishment projects. Protection and Remedial Treatment, Paint Finishes, Mortars & Renders, Pointing, Paint Removal, Masonry Cleaning, Structural Repairs, Epoxy Resin Repairs.
Metal, Wood & Glass
Fine Joinery, Wood Carving, Windows and Doors, Stained Glass, Secondary Glazing, Metalwork.
You can contact us at:
Dunham House, 181 Wellington Road North, Stockport, Cheshire, SK4 2PB.
Tel: 0161 442 9850 / Fax: 0161 432 8478