Regent Cinema fire: Lyme Regis Art Deco venue wrecked by blaze
The roof of a 1930s Art Deco cinema has collapsed after being engulfed in flames.
Fire broke out at the Grade II listed Regent Cinema in Lyme Regis at lunchtime.
The collapse of the structure meant firefighters were only able to tackle the blaze from outside the building.
Cinema staff and people who were in a shop that also occupies the building are reported to be safe, the fire service said.
At the height of the blaze, thick black smoke rising from the site could be seen for miles.
Dorset Fire and Rescue said eight crews from three counties worked to prevent the flames spreading to adjoining buildings.
A cordon was put in place and neighbouring businesses were closed for the afternoon.
People with respiratory conditions were advised to keep their windows closed.
History of the Regent
- The Regent was opened in 1937 by a local cinema operator Donald Hardy, who operated it until the early 1970s
- The Art Deco building was designed by Bristol-based architect William Henry Watkins who designed several other cinemas in the South West of England, including the Forum in Bath
- It is a Grade II listed building
- Originally it had a "Hollophane" lighting system whereby motorised dimmers slowly changed and mixed red, blue and green lights, concealed in troughs
- The cinema's original 35mm Phillips DP75 projector has been retained for special performances
Source: Scott Cinemas