Barber's Palace Cinema

Location and period of operation:

Barber's Palace Station Road, Tunstall 1909



The first cinema opened in Tunstall.
George Herbert Barber began to give 'magic lantern' lectures on religious and temperance subjects - he wanted to use moving pictures to replace his slides. In 1909 he built Barber's Palace cinema in Tunstall.
Within ten years he owned two cinemas in Tunstall
, one each in Hanley, Fenton and Biddulph (all established between 1909 and 1913) and five in Buckinghamshire.
In 1929-30 he served as Lord Mayor for the city of Stoke-on-Trent. 


Evelyn Fryer remembers early visits to Barberís Picture Palace in Tunstall:

"We Ďad to walk from Turnhurst to Tunstall ... there was no buses then ... I went there, as a little girl, and me Dad always insisted we went upstairs, out of the rough stuff ... They had an organ and Mr Longshaw, from Packmoor, used to play it while the film was on, and it was silent, black and white, and the words ran along the bottom, so you knew what they were saying."

see Who's Who in Staffordshire entry for George Barber

(See sources)


Questions / comments / contributions? email: Steve Birks