Apollo Cinemas

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Apollo Logo 2011.jpg

Apollo Cinemas was a locally focused, independently owned multiplex cinema operator in the United Kingdom. In 2013 the chain was acquired by Vue Cinemas. Its stated mission is to welcome, engage and delight local audiences with a variety of onscreen entertainment and well designed, comfortable cinemas.[1] Apollo showed mainstream blockbusters, independent film and onscreen entertainment such as music concerts, sporting events, opera, and ballet.

Apollo had 14 cinemas nationwide, with plans to open new sites in Brentwood[2] and Bicester.[3]

On 25 January 2013, the acquisition by Vue Cinemas was completed with sites transferred to the Vue brand over the coming months. 4 sites were sold to Reel Cinemas with the final site sold to Curzon Cinemas.[4][5]


The company’s vision is to be a local entertainment hub by updating the cinema experience in two ways. Firstly, by developing its offer to show non-film product onscreen such as music concerts, sporting events, opera and ballet. And, secondly by developing new cinemas to include café-bars, lounge areas, gaming and Wi-Fi, wherever possible within existing sites.[1]

Apollo was the first fully digital circuit in the UK, beginning its transition away from 35mm print in 2009.[6] The estate is equipped with Sony 4K Digital Cinema projection, Real D screens and Dolby Surround sound. This equipment produces a picture detail at the highest level that the human eye can see.


Once part of the large Apollo Leisure Group, Apollo Cinemas has a heritage in entertainment, live music and theatre. After Leisure was sold to Clear Channel Entertainment, Apollo Cinemas was formed in April 2002 to purchase the UK cinema assets back. The acquisition was financed by Mrs Anita Gregg and HSBC. It comprised 11 cinemas and substantial investment led to the opening of new cinemas in London (2004), Fareham and Stroud (both 2005), Altrincham (2006) and Redditch (2007), together with significant improvement to the original cinema estate.

Apollo Cinemas Ltd was the UK's largest independent chain and accounts for around 1.25% of total UK box office admissions. It was the UK's 6th largest cinema operator in terms of number of screens with 83 screens over 14 sites.

On 11 May 2012 it was announced that Vue Cinemas were to buy Apollo Cinemas for £20m.[4] On 25 January 2013, the sale was cleared by the OFT after Vue agreed to sell 4 sites to Reel Cinemas.[5]

Escape Magazine[edit]

Escape is a free bi-monthly film magazine published for and given away at Apollo Cinemas. It features information and posters for upcoming films at Apollo Cinemas. The magazine was also available to read on the Apollo website.

Former locations[edit]

Due to the acquisition of Apollo Cinemas by Vue Cinemas, a number of sites were sold to Reel Cinemas.

Apollo Cinemas, Piccadilly Circus, London
Town/City Country Screens Sony Digital Cinema 4K 3D Screens Sold to
Altrincham, Greater Manchester England 6 Yes Vue
Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria England 6 Yes Vue
Burnley, Lancashire England 9 Reel
Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire Wales 6 Yes Vue
Fareham, Hampshire England 5 Reel
Leamington Spa, Warwickshire England 6 Yes Vue
Morecambe, Lancashire England 4 Reel
Piccadilly Circus, Westminster, London England 5 Yes Vue
Port Talbot, Neath Port Talbot Wales 6 Reel
Redditch, Worcestershire England 7 Yes Vue
Rhyl, Denbighshire Wales 5 Yes Vue
Stafford, Staffordshire England 3 Yes Vue
Stroud, Gloucestershire England 6 Yes Vue
Torbay, Devon England 9 Yes Vue


  1. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-09-24. Retrieved 2011-09-23. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ [2]
  4. ^ a b "Vue Acquires Apollo Cinemas For £20m". Blazing Minds. 
  5. ^ a b "OFT accepts sale of four cinemas to remedy merger concerns". Office of Fair Trading. 
  6. ^ [3]

External links[edit]