A Agnes Woodward, Albert Close, Allan Rosser, Alfred Newton, Agnes Wimpey, Alex Reece, Alan Dodd, April Ashley, Annette Ridgway, Arthur Fulwood, Alice Davies, Amanda Terry, Andy Elvis, April Welsby, Angela Webb, A. B.Close, Aaron Daniels, Ann Heaney, Arthur H James, Agnes Jones, Albert Gerrard, Audrey Bentley, Annie Sims, Arthur Batten Close, Anita Rees, Alice Jones, Anthony Owens, Alex Goldsmith, Angela Main, Ann Jones, Andrew Mark,
B Bob Lee, Barbara Rough, Bell Massey, Bob Dixon, , Barbara Cain, Betty Hamer,Brenda Huxley, Bert Egginton (also known as Bert Lotto), Barbara Paskin, Bob Milne, Billy Addis, Bob Stead, Bruce Williams, Betty Langton, Brenda Bunnell, Billy Bath, Bob Hadfield, Barry Hopwood, Barbara Lloyd, Bob Dorrington, Alf Dixon, Barry Hall, Bob Carrington, Beryl Rainford,
C Charles Powell, Catherine Parry, Cecil St. Maur Thorp, Charlie Jones. Clive Holdstock, Cath Fox, Charles Mellor, Charlie Bowden, Chris Draycott, Christopher Hanratty, Cecil Carlton, Christina Jean Malone, Craig Villanti, Chris Burke, Colin Hill, Chris Rowlands, Chris Davies, Caroline Picken, Cecil Cartwright,
D Desmond Beverly, David A Ellis, Derek Moore, Douglas Baker, Dennis Davidson, David Elliot, Dorothy Hodgekinson, Doreen (Mandy) Gibson, Desmond Beverley, Dougie Jones, Dorothy Whitlow, Dot Attwood, Dolly Orde, Dennis Radford, Dot Evans, Doreen Jackson, Dorothy Furber, Doug Wilcox, Diane Pierce, Dot Cotgreave, David Scruton, Dolly (Doris) Corfe, Do (Doreen) Corfe, Dave Potts, Dorothy Wilson, Dot Rowlands, Doreen Williams, David Thomas, Doris Jones, Doreen Massey, Doris Yates,
E Elsie Edge, Eddie Rowlands, Ethel Hewson. Eric Monkhouse. Edward Williamson, Elisabeth Smith, Edith Blythin, Eileen Foreshaw, Eddie Edge, Emily Roberts, Ernest Hall, Emily Dean, Edward Rhodes, Eileen Rogers, Enid Davies, Etta Barlow, Edward Dennis Jones,
F Flora Tapp, Fred Rowley, Frances Stanley, Frank Smith, Fred Dickenson, Freda McHugh, Fred Bird, Frank Kerr, Felicity Hanratty, Frank Hughes, Fiona Leadbetter, Fred Morgan, Frank Griffiths, Frances Andrews (laterTinkler), Freda Haslam, Fran Milton, Fraser Curtiss, Fred Sheldon, Florence Pleavin(Crimes), Frances Tinkler, Florrie Walker,
G George Harrop, Geoff Williams, George Buckley, Graham Jones, Gordon Brown, Gordon Potter, Geoff Morris, Gwendoline Millar, George Skelton, Glyn Hibbert, Gladys Davies, Gaz Doherty, Gordon A Harrold, George Haydock, Gwen Artel, George Fawcett, Gareth Thomas, Gaynor Massey, Grace Hughes, Gladys Davies,
H Hugh Price Jones, Horace “Chuck” Walker, Harry Reginald Yorke, Hilda Musgrave, Helen Hughes, Hettie Huffton, Hailey J Morris, Helen Jones, Harry Woodcock, Harold Lightfoot, Henry Dillon,
I Iris Bland, Irene Askey, Irene Jones, Ivor Roberts,
J Joyce Hodgekinson, John Lightfoot, Joan Hayden, Jack Lalley, Judy Liversage, John Ellis, Joyce Edmonds, Jean Davies, Joan Partington, Joe Bolton, Joan Price, Joyce Conway/Garner, John Reay, Joyce Jones, John Ingman, Jack White, John Paskin, Justin Conlon, Jennifer Hibbert, John Jeffreys, Joe Strange, June Roberts, Jacqueline Edwards, J S Caveney, Joe Villanti, Joan Davies, June Worthington, Joan Massey, Josie Brown, Joan Chatterton, John Oldham, Joyce Edmonds, Jean Renwick, Jessy Pleavin, Janet Roberts, Joan Beales, Jon Hocking, Jo Ellis, Jacqueline Hill, Julie Caden, Jesse Roberts, Johnnie Owen, John Kinsey, Jenny Clegg, Jackie Roberts, Jean Beales, Jenny Reynolds,
K Ken Cooper, Keith Addis, Kerry Haywood, Karl Cleveley, Keith Hignett, Ken Creelman, Kath Onions (later Kath Potter), Kenneth Edmondson, Keith Addis, Karl Morris, Kath Jones, Kenny Poynton, Kathleen Massey, Keith Davies, Kev Davies,
L Louisa Smith, Lynn Wainwright, Lil Rodgers, Laurence Hindmarsh, Linda Pleavin, Lisa Contilli, Laura Jones, Lena Jones, Lillian (Rita) Minshull, Linda Barnes, Lorraine Crawford, Lee McClounnan,
M Mabel Douglas, Marion Baskerville, Mark Jenkins, Miriam Jeffreys, Margaret Cooper (nee Turner), Mervyn S Moorse, Muriel Jackson, May Hayes, Margaret Philipson, Mary Charmley, Mary Arkinstall, Marian Black, Michael Smith, Marion Aldridge, Marjorie Price, Malcolm Oldfield, Mary Sweeney, Mick Mills, Mark Jenkins, Malcolm Leech, Mary Challoner, Mal Tones, Mark Rosser, Madge Dawson, Maureen ‘ Moe’ Smith, Millie Holland, Madge Buckley, Mark Sheldon, Mary Davies, Mike Rushton, Marie Cambell, Melissa Lanceley, Madge Morris, Maragret Ledster, Mervyn Howell, Matt Westward, Michelle Doherty, Melita Royle, Mignon Singleton, Mark Lees, Mary Jones,
N Norman W Ellison, Nick Egginton, Nick Jones, Nancy Lyon, Neil Watson, Nigel Norris, Nan Moore, Nellie Willets, Norma Roberts,
O Olive Rose, Owen Jones, Olive Evans,
P Pat Cain (later Pat Davies), Phyllis Vickers , Peggy Edge, Pat Stafford, Prynea Gregory, Peter Davies, P W Dennis, Peggy Rawson, Pat Spalding, Pauline Villanti, Pauline Meyers, Pat Spenceley, Pam Jones, Pat Tomlins, Paul Taylor, Pat Leonard, Peggy Davies,
R Ronnie Jones, Ron Evans, Ronald Arkinstall, Ross Lewis, R Wilson Padgett, Ron Jones, Rowland Jones, Rose Hill, Ray Davies, Ronald Barrie, Robert Jones, Ron Thurling, Rob Whitfield, Ruby Edwards, Ronald Brunt, Rob Collier, Ricky Platt, Richard Waring, Rita Jones, Roy Ingram, Ros Leonard,
S Stephen Wynstanley, Shelia Pickford. Sue Massey, Sid Woodward, Stephen Purdom, Sid Brown, Sammy Parsons, Sidney Woodworth, Sheila Watts, Shirley Shaw, Sid Jones, Shelia Grundy, Sandra Mann, Sylvia Coss, Stuart Smith, Sandra Bartlett, Stan Tinkler, Sharon Wild, Shaun Dorbar, Sharon Attwood, Sheila Clarkson, Sherron Morrey, Sheila Everden, Sandra Edwards, Sheila Taylor, Sheila Bennion (later Sheila Dunning), Stanley Davies, Sheila Tierney, Steve Fox, Sandra Lloyd, Sue Raynor, Stephen Hewitt, Simon Kelsey, Susan Royle, Sandra Williams, Susan Harrop,
T Ted Rhodes, Tom Feeney, Tony Rawson, Tony Jones, Tommy Meacock, Terry Gregory, Tricia Hanratty, Tommy Sutton, Thomas Priddin, Terry Underhill, Tom Holland, Tony Parker, Tommy Willets, Tony Bilsborough, Tracy Roberts, Thomas Prescott, Tony Owen,
V Vincent Dunning, Violet Roberts, Vera Roberts, Valda Harding, Valerie Cook,
W Walter Vickers, William Mulvey, Will Hunter, William J Hankin, Winnie Green, Wendy Lewis,
Y Yvonne Clifford,
Did you work in Chester cinemas, or knew someone who did? Then please add onto this list via our contact page.
Marvelous news from Kay & Peter Cooke who have sent in pictures of Kay’s parents, Gwen & Ron Thurling, who met and married when they were both employed at Chester’s largest cinema, the ABC Regal when it first opened.
Gwen Artel was born in Russell Street, Boughton, Chester. Ron was from across the river in Handbridge. Their “Silver Screen” marriage was one of sixty one happy years which all began in Chester cinemas. They are both featured above in this early staff picture taken in the circle foyer of the ABC REGAL cinema.
They lived in Sussex Road, Newton, enjoying life with their family and many friends & neighbours. Ron became a well known quiz master at the regular Thursday night pub quiz at the Bear’s Paw.
When Sue Hayes spotted her mum Alice on this late 1940s photograph of Chester Odeon staff she contacted us to say that her late father, Robert James Stead, also worked at the cinema. Robert was a projectionist and had worked at other cinemas in Chester during the golden era of movie going. When he arrived at the Odeon he met Alice Davies. Their daughter Christine Stead said “dad used to shine the spotlight on mum during the intervals when she was an usherette .. until she agreed to go out with him”. Alice & Stan soon became husband & wife.
They married on the 18th December 1948 at Christ Church in Newtown, Alice was 19 and Robert (Bob) was 28. They had four children and were foster parents to many babies and children during their younger years.
Bob went on to work at John Summers Steel Works until he retired. Later Alice had other part-time jobs including a dinner lady at the Queen’s school.
Alice lives in Chester and is now 91, sadly Bob passed away in 1998. Their marriage was a golden one, with the Odeon Chester bringing them together. “They never looked back and were brilliant parents to us”.
With thanks to their daughters Sue Hayes and Christine Stead for sending photographs & details.
Our very best wishes to Alice.
Kath was a cashier, while Gordon worked in the projection room.
During the 52 years Peter Davies spent working in cinemas from the early 1960s he admits his wife Pat played “a leading role and was the real star” that he discovered at the pictures. Both worked together at the ABC Chester when they were just sixteen years old. At that time socializing between the glamorous usherettes and projectionists was frowned upon, so a blind date was arranged by Pat’s fellow colleague, Lynne Wainwright. In 1964 Pat became cashier at the Odeon, several years before Peter moved across there. They married when they were both eighteen on the 30th October 1965, by coincidence on the 28th anniversary of the ABC opening day. The cinema management made full use of their wedding in the local press to promote the film “Marriage On The Rocks”, fortunately this was not the case as they celebrate their 55 year wedding anniversary this year (2020).
When Prynea Rumsey joined the Odeon staff in the sixties little did she realize that way up high beyond the projection beam was her future husband-to-be, Terry Gregory, who was one of the projection team which included the original chief projectionist Ernest Hall, and Gordon Potter the second operator. Their wedding took place on Saturday 14th June 1969, a warm sunny day at Saint Mark’s Church in Saltney. Gordon Potter was the Best Man. Rumour had it that the vicar had enjoyed a few sherries before the service. Whether that was a joke , who knows? However, Prynea tells us that the vicar’s name was Frankie Howard!
“A Good time was had by all” says Prynea, who enjoys her retirement with Terry in Chester, and is a member of Chester Cinemas Facebook group.
Lynne Wainwright, pictured here in the rear stalls at the ABC Chester, worked on sales and as an usherette during the early to mid sixties. Often she would take part in publicity events, one being for “Carry On Cabby”, although for this she was dressed in uniform and sat on a motor scooter for the press photographs.
c. April 1953 ~ David A Ellis researched
I remember being a minor of the ABC cinema in Foregate Street, although, my badge is but a memory, writes Cindy Bunch, who now lives in Victoria BC, Canada. “In the mid-1960s, my Mum’s late sister Valerie Cook worked as an usherette at the Odeon. She was very small 4’ 9” which caused a problem when she carried the ice cream tray as it banged against her knees. My Dad fixed the strap on the tray with additional holes to higher the tray.
My Mum’s name was Mignon (Min) Singleton. She came from Salisbury Street, just off Cheyney Road. I remember that she and my Auntie Win (Winnie Green) worked together at the Gingham Kitchen which had been built into the front of the ABC’s grand entrance hall. My Dad, Roy and Auntie Win’s husband Frank told the ladies that “No wife’s of theirs should work. So the following day they went to the manager and jacked in their jobs right there and then. When they returned home, my Dad asked what the heck did she think she was playing at, we need the money! So the next day, Mum and Auntie Win went back to the Gingham Kitchen. As bold as brass, telling the manager “We’ve reconsidered our position. As such we’ll stay on as is” Yup, they got their jobs back.
My Mum served a Gingham Kitchen meal to the folk group Peter, Paul and Mary when they appeared at the ABC before a performance there. A snippet of family and Chester cinema history”.