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The Phoenix, remarkably unchanged
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The Phoenix, remarkably unchanged

When the council were selling off the contents of the Phoenix I got an Invitation to Tender and used that as an excuse to get in and see the place one last time before it went forever. The big orange clock had gone, and the stage was in place as a legacy of the last event to happen there, but otherwise, the same evocative place.

First film I saw there was 'Elvis at the World's Fair' in a Saturday matinee, must have been about 1970.

Any Phoenix memories?
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Picture added on 17 March 2004
Comments:
Aye, the "Picture Hoose". Many a jolly and happy time me’n me freends haed there.
The first time there was when Dad took me to see ‘The Lady and the Tramp" (’56’ -‘57?) As soon as the lights went out I howled continually ‘til Dad had to take me out and home. He wisna best plaesed. But the next time he took me to see a cowboy film, and everything was ok !
In the early 60’s we would go to the matinee with our bob (ninepence to get in and thrupence for a "3D" ice lolly)
Norman Wisdom was a great favourite of us all (I first heard Mr Grimsdale addressed in The Phoenix) ; to a lesser extent Jerry Lewis; cowboy films with wonderful characters both treacherous and heroic; I’m afraid we saw a few of the bad films Elvis was making; I saw ‘Summer Holiday’ and ‘The Young Ones’ the same year they were made (but never since!); I remember one Saturday night the streets of Kirkwall were full of peedie warriors claiming to be Sparticus; and war movies to the delight of us boys muscleman Steve Reeves battling Trojans and their ilk; Tarzan could never be forgotten; innumerable Disney films
We saw films that could please everyone.

~ Sumteeik


Added by hamish crisp on 31 March 2004
The Phoenix has gone? That's sad... it was a great old building. My band played there in 1995... fond memories indeed. I'm planning on a visit to Orkney this summer and was looking forward to having a look at the place again. These old cinemas are a dying breed, so it's a shame another one has gone.
Added by Dave on 26 May 2004
As a child, I took part in a "talent competition"[what talent?!] which was held in the Phoenix - a huge experience for a bairn to sing accompanied by a REAL band [The Dynamos].
Sad it's no longer there - had lots of enjoyable times.
Added by Jackie on 29 December 2007
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Kirkwall

Earl's Palace and St Magnus Cathedral, colourisedNorth Walls School day outKGS 1938Colourised photo of farmer from Papdale FarmAerial view of KirkwallDoorway to The Gallery, Bridge StreetScaffolding on Cathedral west frontConstruction of new cathedral spireCathedral from Buttquoy