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Map showing Regent Theatre

Ballarat’s Regent Theatre was built in 1927 at a cost of £53,000. It was one of the first of Francis Thring Snr’s Regent franchises to open, shortly after Sydney’s theatre and before that of Brisbane and Melbourne and early on it was also one of the more profitable. It was, however, burned down in 1943 after which a second theatre was erected.

The facade is beaux arts inspired interwar free classical style with its red marble ionic columns. The foyer and mezzanine are retained and feature renaisance revival details including vaulted arches and grand marble staircases and impressive windows.

While the theatre was redeveloped as a multiplex movie theatre in the 1988, fortunately the development preserved most of these interiors including the showcase cinema whilst adding a “gold class” cinemas extension with a sympathetic postmodern style Lydiard Street facade extension and glass facaded upper storey.

Today it remains a very popular cinema complex.

The original building is recognised with local heritage significance being is within City of Ballarat central area heritage overlay HO171 and in 2010 it was recognised with state significance being placed on the Victorian Heritage Register.

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