Opinion: Former bingo hall would make first-class concert hall for Norwich
15:15 25 April 2014
Archant © 2004
Derek James’ article in Friday’s Norwich Evening News about the Carlton Cinema on All Saints Green (which closed to the public finally in 2011, when it was a Mecca bingo hall) mentioned an interesting feature of the Carlton which reader Charles Almond was unaware of.
According to the article, Ray Cossey, the manager of the cinema in its most glorious years, highlights the fact that sound tests carried out before installing their six-channel sound system revealed that the Carlton had a perfect acoustic curve.
This view was reinforced by Sir Malcolm Sargent, the famous conductor and principal leader of the Promenade Concerts at The Royal Albert Hall from 1948 to 1967, following a concert by the National Philharmonic Orchestra at the cinema.
There have been many letters in these pages regarding the appalling acoustics of Blackfriars Hall and the complete lack of facilities for performers and the fact that the council has insufficient funds to provide a purpose-built concert hall for the city.
Perhaps the council and/or any other interested parties would consider arranging a full structural survey of the former Carlton Cinema and the viability of making this a first-class concert hall for the city before the bulldozers arrive.
With a seating capacity of 2,000, excellent positioning in the city centre and – we now know – excellent acoustics, this is surely worthy of investigation.
Charles Almond, Culverin Close, Thorpe St Andrew.