THE Paris, in New Road, Brighton, was originally a theatre which was destroyed in a fire at the end of the 19th century.

The venue was rebuilt and underwent a number of name changes before finally settling on the Paris in 1955.

The venue had first been named the Empire Theatre of Varieties, becoming the Coliseum Theatre at the beginning of the 20th century, when it began to host music hall performances.

In 1909, cinema equipment was installed in the theatre, and the building was renamed the Court Cinema, run by Mrs Maude Barraford. It had 1,250 seats.

The Paris even had ties with The Argus, whose first published photograph was of a fire at the theatre.

The Evening Argus offices at the time were just two streets away.

The cinema changed hands several times before it closed in 1940 due to the owners’ inability to sustain the business during the Second World War.

After the war it was acquired by the Theatre Royal Brighton – which had been operating since 1807 – which leased out the building and it operated once again as a theatre.

In 1955, with falling audience numbers, the lessee of the time, J. Baxter Somerville, introduced foreign films in an attempt to keep it open – and it became the Paris Continental Cinema.

Unfortunately the scheme did not succeed and despite a campaign to save it, which was led by celebrated actors such as Laurence Oliver and Ralph Richardson, the Paris reverted to its landlord, The Theatre Royal.

Permission was subsequently obtained for its demolition and the Paris was closed in 1963, replaced with a rather uninspiring office block.

Did any of our readers ever go to The Paris?

Can you tell us anything more about the intricate ceilings and architecture of the building?

It seems a shame the city has lost such a beautiful building.