Rebirth of retro Red Hill

Images & text: Trina McLellan

At first an open-air theatre, then a nightclub before becoming a skating rink that eventually closed & then burned out. After sitting derelict for nearly two decades as a skeletal shell covered in graffiti, now the former Red Hill Skate Arena is about to be restored to its original purpose by the Sourris family as the hip Red Hill Cinemas. On Sunday, March 31, 2019, the public got to see how the interior shell now looks, before the theatre fit-out begins.

The first stage of the redevelopment - ensuring walls, ceilings and floors were safe - is complete. Arches over the entrance - covered decades ago - have re-emerged, adorned by commissioned street art. The open day saw hundreds view the colourful interior and exterior walls.

Each segment of the brick walls houses a different, eye-catching, oversized illustration, many by world-renowned street artists.

Soon work will begin on the interior fit-out for the complex that will be home to several boutique cinemas. But the street art will be staying.

Stunning pieces by Travis Vinson (aka Drapl) and Fintan McGee (famous for his grain silo illustrations) don the walls.

Some of the street art has been in place for more than 10 years.

The styles are individual but striking in their size.

The redevelopment is expected to take up to two years to complete.

But won’t these walls be a real talking point when the complex opens?

Five Star Cinemas - the Sourris family business - has its own special connection to this site, with their grandfather’s brother once owning it.

It was their relative who installed the terrazzo floor with brass inlay that was revealed recently as work began on the redevelopment.

To discover more about the Red Hill Cinemas redevelopment, go to Images and text for this Steller story by Trina McLellan, Reporting4Work

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