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Iconic Islington building restored to former glory

PUBLISHED: 06:08 31 March 2015

The former Carlton Cinema, in Essex Road

The former Carlton Cinema, in Essex Road

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Former Carlton Cinema available to hire five days a week - with prayer meetings on Tuesday and Sunday

The original features are said to have been restoredThe original features are said to have been restored

An iconic piece of Islington’s history has been restored to some of its former glory.

The old Carlton Cinema, in Essex Road, has reopened its doors as Gracepoint; a 900 capacity venue available for hire and an active church.

The future of the 1920’s art deco building had been unclear as the owners’ - evangelical group Resurrection Manifestations - plans to extend it had been turfed out by the planning inspector.

A spokesman for Grace Point said: “We are excited to introduce to you London’s new premier venue for hire.

The old cinema during the renovation workThe old cinema during the renovation work

“A historic Grade II* listed building located in the heart of Islington, Gracepoint was built by the famous architect George Coles. The venue has a magnificent Art Deco style façade, infused with an Egyptian theme, dressed in multi-coloured hathernware tiles.

“Previously the Carlton Cinema, this London venue has recently been refurbished and the original décor being restored.

“Gracepoint offers auditorium style seating with a capacity of over 900 and is an ideal venue to host conferences, presentations, product launches, screenings and performance led activities.

“The building is now available for hire for corporate events. With over 16,000 square feet of space and a high resolution real projected screen, Gracepoint is an ideal venue for any occasion.

The 900 capacity venue is now availalbe for hireThe 900 capacity venue is now availalbe for hire

The building started life when the Carlton Cinema chain bought the land in 1929 and opened a year later with a capacity of 2,226. The Egyptian design of the façade and interior was influenced by the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb by Howard Carter in 1922.

It closed as a picture house in 1972 and became a bingo hall, which closed in 2007 due to the forthcoming smoking ban

Resurrection Manifestations, based in Stamford Hill, bought the building for around £5million in 2007, but their extend the building were scuppered.

Now the group will hold prayer meetings on Tuesday and Sundays, and hire it out for the rest of the time.

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