Electric Theatre

The Electric Cinema was on the corner of Fall Lane and Weirside. New houses now stand on the site. In 1911, Thomas Leyland, pictured below, arrived in Marsden in his caravan with his Electric Bioscope and Theatre of Marionettes. He settled with his family in Marsden, giving puppet shows and showing silent films in a tent. He opened the brick-built cinema in 1918, and it seated 550.

He died in 1949, and the cinema was then run by his daughter, Laura Beardsall. She ran it with her two nieces until ill health prevented her. In 1975, heavy snow caused the roof to collapse, and the building was demolished.

'Nationwide' TV item about the E;ectric TheatreIn 1971, BBC's Nationwide programme ran a five-minute item about Marsden's Electric Theatre featuring Laura and her nieces, Muriel and Marionettes. Click on the picture on the right to see the programme.