Curzon Cinema, CRC, c Brass Architecture

A planning application is expected to be submitted before the end of the month. Credit: Brass Architecture

Fresh proposals drawn up for Urmston cinema conversion

A revised vision to transform the former Curzon Cinema into a community hub and “local icon” has superseded earlier plans to convert the building into flats.

Church group CRC has acquired the site, located off Bowfell Road in Urmston, and is working with Brass Architecture to draw up proposals to repurpose the space for the benefit of locals.

The plan is to breathe new life into the building, which ceased being a cinema in 2008 and has been vacant for several years.

CRC’s plans feature a comprehensive phased refurbishment that will provide a coffee shop, on the ground floor and office space on the second floor.

The main auditorium on the ground floor, as well as the Grand Lobby on the first floor, will be brought back into use. CRC, which currently operates out of a site on nearby Brook Road, will use the building for services on Sundays.

The upgraded Curzon Cinema could be used for meetings, classes, functions, and events, by SME businesses, community groups, and local residents, according to Ricky Sellars, co-founder of Brass Architecture.

Curzon Cinema , CRC, c Brass Architecture

The main auditorium will be refurbished. Credit: Brass Architecture

“Our proposals for the redevelopment of the former Curzon Cinema in Urmston will restore this treasured building to its former glory,” he said.

“It will be a community institution, a local destination, and a local icon. The building will be returned as a modern-day theatre.”

CRC and Brass intend to submit a planning application for the project before the end of the month and have circulated a newsletter to local residents to explain the scope of the proposals.

Last year, developer Raynor Rowen pulled the plug on plans to convert the building into 42 apartments after backlash from residents and Trafford Council.

Sellars said the revised proposals are aimed at benefitting the local community.

“We believe that the redevelopment of such community architectural assets should prioritize the needs of the surrounding population,” he said.

“Our responsibility is to ensure that this building adds value to Urmston for future decades. We believe our scheme does.

“We believe that our proposals are a win-win for all, and we are proud to submit them for approval consideration”.

Click on any image to enlarge

Your Comments

Read our comments policy

Wouldn’t it be better as a…. cinema?

By Will

Well it won’t make a suitable Lidl – not after the debacle in Wavertree………….

By Bob Dawson

There is no parking around there and would be difficult to compete with nearby Trafford Centre cinema.

By Anonymous

Excellent use of an iconic building

By Anonymous

This will hopefully bring the communty togather in these difficult times what a wonderful idear ….

By Anonymous

Looks like a great use for an attractive building, I hope it can be delivered.

By Anonymous

Excited to see the Curzon come back to life

By Anonymous

It’s not a theatre, it’s a church

By Anonymous

Would be nice to see more branches of Curzon up north.

By Anonymous

Parking ?

By Armitage Julie

Brilliant idea perhaps it could incorporate youth clubs for teens and activities which the area is short of.

By Bernice Kelly

I fundamentally oppose any development of any religous aspect as i dont think religon of any type brings an area together. I would love to see this iconic building become a theatre and event space. That all being said this could offer a compromise.

By Chris

So it’ll be a church

By Anonymous

This will be amazing for local businesses 🙂

By Anonymous

It’s a fantastic idea. I went there a couple of times a week as a child a lot of happy memories.

By Bill

I think we need a youth club for the kids get them off the streets and stop them getting into trouble that’s what we are missing round here, I would even help out with it the kids needs somewhere to go

By Kirsty Smith

We personally don’t think this is the best use of a beautiful building- essentially a church with some community spaces?? There is already a huge parking problem around this area . Has this been addressed?

By Anonymous

Exciting times This building deserves a second chance

By Anonymous

A place for teenagers to hang out would be good – with pool and table tennis tables, possibly some boxing coaching etc.

By Anonymous

Brilliant! A community hub for our area is just a fantastic idea of a much loved building to remain in this area for all to enjoy.

By Elizabeth Holland

This looks like a well-needed development in keeping with the character of the area

By Clive Thomas

Nice idea. It would be great for Urmston to have it’s own theatre and also ro be used for various other community groups.

By Anonymous

I live only a few hundred yards from this Iconic building. I haven’t had any consultation regarding its development. I am pleased that the new proposals are going forward.

By Kirsten Euteneuer

For such a beutiful building why can’t it be made back into its original use. My grandson always said if he had enough money he would buy it and turn it back into what cinemas used to be like, with ice cream in the interval. I’m sure family’s of Urmston and surrounding areas would love to take there children.

By Carol

Sounds great, cafe always popular and ‘out of Urmston’ activities a big bonus – yoga or exercise classes, especially for retired/less mobile people, knitting, crochet or sewing groups, activities for toddlers and young mums, advice or info sessions – personally I’d love tai chi and or art classes 😊


Brilliant… such an iconic building should definitely be brought back to its former glory.. great news

By Anonymous

Bringing the building back into function in any manner will be a great improvement to the rundown image it currently has.

By Matt

This is going to be an Evangelical church
I was speaking to a member of the church only last week

By Anonymous

I’m just making sure it’s not flats TBH. Why not make it back to what it used to be?

By Anonymous

What wonderful plans. A theatre/auditorium sounds amazing
I loved visiting the cinema as a girl so looking forward to stepping.foot in there again. Could the Asoldo Stretford have the same refurb?

By Emma Hayes

A brilliant idea. It would benefit local people with alsorts events, young and older people. Good luck

By Anonymous

Excellent! Planning department….please,please approve this fantastic submission for the good of the community 👍🙂

By Bill Outhwaite

A good use of a treasured piece of many of our histories

By avril

The people complaining it’s a church… what have you contributed to society or the community ever? Fantastic use of space and great that it’s not turned into monotone flats!

By Anonymous

@ April 23, 2024 at 10:14 am
By Anonymous

Good point! This is an imaginative scheme, sensitive to the heritage of the building. And been an evangelical church, it’ll probably actually be full on Sundays.

By Rye

I personally think this is a great initiative for the community, someone is actually trying to do something great to uplift that area, whether it be church or not, the church may be a part of it but it contributes valuably to society, and it will be great if all the incentives they mentioned come through! So I say well done to them! Looking forward to seeing it!

By Anonymous

Taking a classic building with local history and turning into a community hub for a community which is apparently on a bit of a low.
What isn’t there to like about this scheme? It’s possibly the best outcome.
The idea of turning it back into an old school cinema sounds lovely but that chances are ost of you won’t be there every weekend. So why suggest you will be? Because that’s what it would need to be financially viable.

By Big Manc Whopper

CRC – this version originates in South Africa although there are others with similar names – is absolutely not about creating a venue and asset for the whole Urmston community. However slick its website and PR is, it’s a fundamentalist church with deeply regressive social views – it specifically excludes LGBT+ people for example – is big on members submitting to the authority of its leaders, so much of the local community will be entirely unwelcome there. And purely from a planning point of view, this sort of church draws in members from a wide area, so parking is often a nightmare.

By False Profits

A great idea and scheme for the benefit of the local community. Urmston and other nearby areas will benefit by changing the old cinema into an asset for the whole community. 👍👍👍👍👍

By Anonymous

I personally think this is a great initiative, for the community. Regardless of whether it’s a church or not it’s going to add value with the other things they are proposing rather than having the building sit there as an eye sore, at least someone is trying to put it to good use. So good on them and I look forward to seeing it when they are done with it.

By Anonymous

This is great

By Anonymous

Looks a great scheme, and could be a fantastic asset for Urmston and the wider area. Great to see the building restored and put back into good use. A much better solution than the previous scheme (as flats), fingers crossed this one comes to fruition.

By Richard Foster

That’s a great idea I live Stratford but old people and young people can go there and people will rent space in the building I am grateful that it’s not going as flat . I hope you get the go ahead with it well done some one looking after people and not money all the time

By Malcolm Powell

I’m not religious, I don’t fear or discriminate against those who are. Preserving the building is paramount. The plans provide numerous possibilities for use outside of Church activities, and without safeguarding the building the status quo remains (Who wouldn’t be cool enough to perform on the stage where others may in time..)

By Ted

Excellent news, best of luck with the project!

By Heritage Action

Excellent plans and the residents will benefit from a local community hub where we can meet for coffee and meet other residents .

By Susan Connolly

Just reopen it as a cinema. It’s not been the same since the curzon closed

By Anonymous

A church? In an increasingly secular society, is there really any call for this?

By Pragmatist

Anyone would think the bulk of the comments on here were from regular PNW readers and not just church members posting because someone in charge there said to. They do know any representations have to go to Trafford Planning with their names and contact details on, dont they?

By Astroturf

I used to take my Son to that cinema when he was younger he loved the way the movie paused halfway for Ice cream. He’s nearly 30 now and still remembers going to that Cinema and we also went to the sports centre where he did Karate lessons and learnt to swim there. It’s such a sad loss for Urmston to lose the Cinema and the building should be used to benefit the locals and nobody else.

By Maxine Reed

What a good idea we would all love a proper dedicated place to be entertained locally

By Mary McPartland

My local Cinema as a child and it later put on Musicals for the local Amateur Theatrical Society! Happy Memories!

By Anonymous

This can only exacerbate the already serious parking problems on the surrounding roads with the attendant danger to pedestrians and other road users.

By Anonymous

I am so pleased that the plans to turn the Curzon into Appartments have been dropped and a Community centre for Urmston and locally resident has been approved This is so much needed and I look forward to these plans

By June Axon

It looks amazing! It could be both a cinema and a church.!
Looking forward to having a coffee there! Hope it all works out as the building itself is in a very poor state of repair.

By A &D Burgess

I live balfour Road right behind the curzon, and I am very much against this. Its going to cause a lot of problems for me and other local residents.

By Anonymous

Nice images, but I’d like to see some of great and talented small architecture practices get a chance here in the city, and not a London firm who, by all regards are talented too but surely local knowledge here can help?

By Anon

Would make a nice Wetherspoons to replace the current lushes dump on Flixton rd.

By Bob.

What else could bring back life to a dead place than the church! The place where God is welcome and honoured.
Congratulationsssss CRC Manchester

By Zaynab

This is nonsense. There comes a time when any building, however attractive/iconic it is has outlived its purpose. This is the case here. The whole thing should be pulled down, along with the (now fairly ramshackle) shops on the same site. The site should then be used for affordable housing – Trafford Council are always banging on about their commitment to provide ‘social housing’ – here’s a chance for them to fulfil that commitment.

There are other local buildings which could qualify as ;iconic’. The swimming pool on the adjacent site would be a good example – that went thirty years ago. Brook Road Library is a prime example, but it was a library and wasn’t suited to any other purpose – so it went.

FWIW, I used the Curzon, the swimming pool and Brook Road Library om a daily/weekly basis for the whole of my growing-up years. It’s a shame to see them go, but, hey, it’s a cruel, hard world…

By Anonymous

“The plan is to breathe new life into the building, which ceased being a cinema in 2008 and has been vacant for several years.”

The building has NOT been vacant for several years. It was in use as a Theatre/Stage/Dance school until fairly recently.

If the proposers of this scheme can’t be trusted to get that basic fact right, they can’t be trusted – full stop.

By Anonymous

It could be opened as an Everyman cinema which also shows National Theatre live

By Irene Coulson

I worked at the Curzon cinema for twenty years between 1985 to 2005 as a projectionist and later worked front of house too. I loved showing the films in both the major ant minor screens. I miss seeing and listening to the films going through the Westar projectors in the projection box. I also went there as a youngster to see films like Grease which was so popular in the 1200 major screen which was sold out a few times and I remember the queues for film because they past the allotments, what great memories! I hope they keep the Curzon name and have some memorabilia of what it was so people can feel nostalgic!

By Phil Hatch

Waste of effort. It will be rejected because of parking issue.

By Local resident

Related Articles

Sign up to receive the Place Daily Briefing

Join more than 13,000 property professionals and receive your free daily round-up of built environment news direct to your inbox


Join more than 13,000 property professionals and sign up to receive your free daily round-up of built environment news direct to your inbox.

By subscribing, you are agreeing to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

"*" indicates required fields

Your Job Field*
Other regional Publications - select below