LOCATION 23
 

 

LAWN TERRACE

These houses were built in the 1790s before John Edye Manning created the Lawn in the early 1800s, in 1810 a flood demolished some bridges and also the house adjacent to the Brook which had to be rebuilt. “It had just been made ready for habitation and was filled with handsome furniture and an elegant library”.

The parallel roads on either side of the Lawn appear to have been planned to frame the rectangular plot and, to complete the frame, houses were built across one end and called Cross Park. All the houses in what is now Lawn Terrace have Georgian proportions and stuccoed facades and their roofs hidden behind parapets.

The doctors of the town had a preference for living in this central position as their houses also contained their surgeries before the first health centre was built.

The Scala House at the end of Lawn Terrace next to the Library became the Scala Cinema. Charlie Payne was the manager for many years and is fondly remembered. He had been projectionist at the old Palace Cinema in Albert Road.
“There were curved steps at the entrance and a round ticket office. If it wasn’t too busy, Charlie would see you in, take your money and show you to your seat.
Many people went twice a week because there was a change of programme on a Wednesday. There were never many people there in the afternoon, perhaps only three or four. When the commercials were on, Charlie would take orders for tea, make it and bring it round to you. He wore a suit and tie during the day and a dress suit and dickie bow in the evenings.
The Saturday matinee was showed films for children. If the children got too excited and stamped their feet, Charlie would come down and threaten to throw out anybody who wasn’t behaving. ”
The Scala closed in 1962.