Bid to demolish old cinema for homes

AN updated planning application has been submitted to Crawley Borough Council to demolish the building which used to house the town’s first cinema.

The application from Crawley Down Ltd to bulldoze the Peugeot garage on Brighton Road and build 48 homes stretching back as far as West Way, Southgate, was received last Tuesday (September 18).

It was originally approved by the council in 2009 with several conditions attached, which the developer has submitted as being met.

The application includes four commercial units and has allowed for the facade of the old building – which stands in a conservation area - to be preserved.

The Imperial Picture House was built in 1909 and suffered massive damage during a fire in 1928. It reopened as the Imperial Cinema but was replaced 10 years later when the Embassy Cinema opened.

Coincidentally, that building – which went on to become Bar Med – is due to be demolished to make way for a new supermarket complex.

To view the application, log on to and search for CR/2009/0368/CC1.