Pier Picture Theatre Redcliffe1928-69
Updated: Jan 6
The theatre, in its present location was first built in 1928, a few blocks up from the original Picture Palace opposite the jetty, that ran from 1917 to 1927.
It was owned by Mr and Mrs Jack Beedham and on 3rd November 1928, a week after closing down the first Picture Palace , the new Picture Pavilion opened without any formalities.
A large crowd turned out to see the opening nights films. "Sadie Thompson" starring Gloria Swanson and Lionel Barrymore, and "Man Bait" starring Marie Provost.
The theatre was used during the second world war for dances and concerts by the many different troops stationed in the area.
Pier Pictures - from the Moreton Bay Library Collection: RLPC-000\000372
The Lariat Kid is a 1929 American silent Western film directed by B. Reeves Eason and starring Hoot Gibson and Ann Christy. A lawman goes undercover to help his brother, a rancher, fight off horse thieves working for his greedy neighbor, who wants his ranch. It was produced and distributed by Universal Pictures. It is a lost film (A lost film is a feature or short film that no longer exists in any studio archive, private collection or public archive. Captain Lash is 1929 American silent adventure drama film directed by John G. Blystone and starring Victor McLaglen, Claire Windsor and Jane Winton. It was produced and distributed by the Fox Film Corporation. A copy of the film exists at the UCLA. The film was released with a music score and sound effects track Lash is the head coal stoker on a steam ship whose shipmates have nicknamed "Captain". Lash somehow grabs the attention of society dame passenger Cora Nevins. Nevins is actually a jewel thief who's lifted diamonds from wealthy passenger Arthur Condrax. She needs Lash to aid in sneaking the "ice" ashore at Singapore. Cocky is Lash's concertina-playing buddy and uses it to signal Lash.
Everyones Magazine Vol.15 No.330 (15 April 1936)
Showmen's Corner. Reporting the Exhibitors’ Round in Queensland.
By Harry Scales.
"There are quite a number of women exhibitors in Queensland, and the keeness displayed by each is most marked in every show I have yet visited.
Mrs. Beedham, of the Pier Theatre, has been associated with pictures for over 16 years, starting first at a little show at Redcliffe and eventually building a fine theatre, which is now the pride of this popular seaside resort and the many people who regularly support it.
Mrs. Beedham is assisted in the business by her son and other members of the family, and an excellent show is presented.
Redcliffe is the holiday resort of the business men during the season, and one can see many a fat, bald-headed gentlemen clad in loud bathers bobbing up and down in the briny".
A major fire occurred in the main shopping centre of Redcliffe in March 1941. It started at the northern end of the block consuming mr Baldwin's boot repair shop, then the Blue Bird Cafe, The Embassy fish shop and finally the two story Moreton Vista boarding house. The fire then attacked the exterior wall of the Pier Theatre but the Redcliffe Volunteer Fire brigade stopped the fire there before the theatre suffered any serious damage.
2 years later on March 14th 1943, Ma Beedham generously turned the Pier Theatre over the entertainers free of charge to hold a concert for the troops stationed in the area. In the early hours of the morning on March 15th 1943 a huge fire destroyed the theatre. The newly formed Auxiliary Fire Brigade was called out at 4.35 in the morning and it was their first structural fire, however it could not be saved. The fire erupted quickly, destroying the theatre, the detached Beedham house and a truck at the rear of the theatre.
Ironically the last film screened before the fire featured Gracie Fields singing "Wish me luck as you wave me goodbye"
Approval for Sunday motion pictures at the Pier and Margate Renown Theatres in April 1943:
Immediately after the fire, Ma Beedham began rebuilding with her son-in-law Alan Stuart in charge of the rebuild. The new Pier Theatre opening nine months later on 7th December 1943.
The opening programme was "Journey for Margaret" starring Margaret O"Brien.
After World War two ended, Ma and Pa Beedham's son George returned from the RAAF and helped out as a projectionist. Over the next few years, many local identities worked at the Pier Theatre including James Houghton (The Redcliffe Mayor and Speaker of The House at Queensland Parliament) sold tickets. Shirley Houghton worked as an usherette. Bob Sutherland was the man on the door and Bill Clayfield was the projectionist.
In 1950 the Beedham family sold the theatre to Messrs Kallos and Londy and it was a popular movie theatre for over 19 years.
The Pier Theatre closed in 1969, and the internal theatre was then demolished to make way for a retail store.
The final screening programme featured the movie "The Naked Runner" starring Frank Sinatra and "The Double Man" starring Yul Bunner.
A page from the Pictorial History Of Redcliffe and Moreton Bay region book 1950s-80s