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Campbeltown Picture House (photo credit Keith Hunter Photography)

Campbeltown Picture House

Campbeltown, Scotland, United Kingdom

Original Theatre Opened: 26th May 1913

Reopened as an Atmospheric Theatre: 1935

Atmospheric Style: Mediterranean Courtyard

Architect: Albert V. Gardner

Website: www.campbeltownpicturehouse.co.uk Link opens in new window

Address: 26 Hall St, Campbeltown, PA28 6BU Link opens in new window

Historic Environment Scotland Category A Listed Building: #LB22965 Link opens in new window (added 15th November 1989)


The Campbeltown Picture House first opened in May 1913 and is now the oldest purpose-built cinema in Scotland still exhibiting films, as well as the only cinema in Scotland with an Atmospheric interior.

In 1931 the cinema closed for 11 days to allow sound equipment to be installed.

In 1935, Albert V. Gardner, the original architect of the cinema, was brought back to modernize the cinema’s interior with an Atmospheric style, the theme being that of a Mediterranean courtyard. The two small buildings in the auditorium on either side of the projection screen (one a Spanish mission style house, the other a half-timbered structure with pantile roof and castellated tower) became to be known as the “wee houses”. One building houses the manager’s office and the other is a store room.

Part-time bingo was introduced in 1963 and ran alongside films until 1986 when the cinema closed. Thereafter, the building was taken over by the Campbeltown Community Business Association and a sizeable fundraising effort resulted in the building being refurbished and reopening in 1989.

The building was granted Historic Scotland Link opens in new window Grade B Listed Building status in 1989, subsequently upgraded to Grade A in 2007-2008 as part of Historic Scotland’s Cinema Thematic Study. The Campbeltown Picture House currently exhibits both first-run films and classic movies.

Further Reading


Historic Photos & Documents
Auditorium as photographed by <i>Urban Realm</i> circa 2013 (JPG)
Auditorium as photographed by Urban Realm circa 2013 (JPG)
Exterior, as photographed by <i>Keith Hunter Photography</i> circa 2019 (JPG)
Exterior, as photographed by Keith Hunter Photography circa 2019 (JPG)
Auditorium, as photographed by <i>Keith Hunter Photography</i> circa 2019 (JPG)
Auditorium, as photographed by Keith Hunter Photography circa 2019 (JPG)
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