Cinema's lost cherubs appear again

IT WAS thought they were lost for ever, but two stone cherubs which for decades adorned the top of a Felixstowe cinema have made a surprising comeback.

IT WAS thought they were lost for ever, but two stone cherubs which for decades adorned the top of a Felixstowe cinema have made a surprising comeback.

The cherubs used to feature on the front of The Playhouse at the junction of York Road and Hamilton Road but were thought to have been lost when the building was demolished in 1970. York House offices and shops complex stands there today.

But after being used as garden ornaments for more than 20 years the lost cherubs have now been donated to the Felixstowe Museum where they have been put on display as one of several new exhibits.

The cherubs had initially been rescued from bulldozers demolishing the cinema by tobacconist George Todd who was planning to use them as garden ornaments.

When he found he could not get them into his garden, he sold them for £5 to another man to use as a garden feature. It took five men to lift them.

But now the cherubs have been donated to the museum by an anonymous man bringing back a whole host of memories for visitors.

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Museum curator Sue Tod said: “We have had them cleaned up and we think they will be an interesting feature. Already we have had people coming in and recognising them - people will say, Oh, I did my courting there! It is such a pocket of memories. “People just come and ask us whether we would like items.

“Often they say, I was taking it down the dump and wondered whether you would like it - which is far better than, I took that down the dump, you might have liked that.

“It is always surprising what people throw away and so many of these things are so interesting and part of the history of our town and its people.”

Also on display this summer are the pieces of the Lancaster bomber which crashed into the sea near the Town Hall and were found washed up on the shore earlier this year, and the Millennium Quilt made by members of the Old Felixstowe Evening Townswomen's Guild showing fashion through the centuries as part of a new room with the theme fashion and elegance.

The local history room has been completely refurbished with new cabinets thanks to funding from the East of England Museums, Libraries and Archives, and the school room, with Victorian desks, flags and blackboard completed.

Felixstowe Museum is open on Sundays and Bank Holidays from 1pm to 5.30pm, and from June also on Wednesday afternoons.

Have you visited Felixstowe Museum - what did you like best? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

Did you know?

The Playhouse opened in 1914 as a theatre and turned to showing films in 1920 as the popularity of the movies grew and because Felixstowe was already blessed with the three theatres - Spa Pavilion, Ranelagh Theatre and Victoria Hall.

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