Fire breaks out at landmark cinema in Harborne

Fire crews have been tackling a blaze at a landmark cinema in Birmingham this morning (15 November).

The former Royalty Cinema, on Harborne High Street, was on fire earlier, with heavy smoke billowing from the building.

Reports from the scene indicate that the fire was approximately the size of a bonfire and confined to the ground floor.

The Royalty was designed by architect Horace G Bradley and opened on October 20, 1930.

It operated as a cinema until 1963 when it was converted into a bingo hall but the building has been empty since 2012. It was Grade II-listed by Historic England in 2011.

According to the listing citation: “The Royalty is an assured and well-realised design with quality features including some Art Deco detailing, by a cinema architect of note.

“The Art Deco fittings are of high quality, representative of an era of resplendent cinema design."