Cinema owner Kevin Markwick in the new Picture House Restaurant with one of the film posters from his collection on the walls.

The Picture House Restaurant is taking shape in Uckfield

The former Luna restaurant in Uckfield High Street is gradually being transformed into The Picture House Restaurant having been taken over by cinema owner Kevin Markwick.

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A ticket machine from a bygone era at The Picture House, Uckfield.

The building has been redecorated inside and out and re-opened on Monday with a movie theme emerging – posters from years gone by on the walls, an old slide projector, ticket machine and film rolls in the windows.

There’s more work to be done but that will take place over time.

A sign bearing the new name has to go up and there’s a big bare wall inside to the right where a Frith photograph from 1955, which shows The Picture House cinema and restaurant in the same image, will take pride of place.

There are memories all around for Kevin Markwick. “This is the sound of my childhood,” he said as he pinged the old ticket machine in a window.

He pointed out the poster of the first-ever film shown by the Markwick family at The Picture House – 40 Pounds of Trouble, starring Tony Curtis – in 1964.

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A poster of the first film shown by the Markwick family at The Picture House, 40 Pounds of Trouble, starring Tony Curtis.

Tom Jones, with Albert Finney and Susannah York, will forever be remembered within the Markwick family because Kevin’s mother was heavily pregnant when it was due to be shown.

Kevin said: “She was told she wasn’t allowed to give birth to my brother that week because we were going to be really busy.” He can’t remember the end of the story, whether his brother was prepared to wait or not.

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Tom Jones, another 1964 film with a story attached to it. Kevin Markwick’s mother was told she mustn’t give birth during the week it was showing because the cinema would be really busy.

In one of the windows are stacks of film reels, each containing 2000 feet of film – 90 feet for each minute – which would have been spliced together. A splicer will be going on display in the future.

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Cans of film in a window at The Picture House Restaurant, Uckfield.

Some of Kevin’s favourite films were the disaster movies of the 1970s, Airport, Towering Inferno and The Poseidon Adventure and posters from that era can also be seen on the restaurant walls.

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Newly painted, the outside of the new Picture House Restaurant.

The Cine Dinner has been launched where, for £29.95, cinema-goers will be able to get a cinema ticket, enjoy two course meal at the restaurant and then be offered an ice cream and coffee at the cinema.

The aim, says Kevin, is to offer a stress-free evening with the meal ready for diners on arrival having been pre-ordered. He wants to create a relaxed atmosphere at the restaurant.

Cinema and restaurant will work together but still be separate entities. People will be able to buy their tickets for cinema-going as usual and the restaurant is open to all diners as previously.

Menu

The menu includes:

Starters

Smoked Chicken and Gruyere Salad, with crispy vegetables, fennel, mixed leaves, toasted pine nuts and vinaigrette

Pan Seared Scallops, with creamed corn and spicy tomato salsa

Homemade Scotch Egg, black pudding, warm sausage meat and English mustard mayonnaise

Stilton and Walnut Pate, flavoured with brandy parsley, served with French toast and crispy pear

Carrot and Cashew Nut Samosas, flavoured with caraway seeds and tumeric, served with hyogurt and mint dressing

Salmon Gravadlax, dill and juniper home-cured salmon with beetroot crisps, rye bread and horseradish cream

Gorgonzola dna Pancetta Bruschetta topped with fresh rocket.

Mains

Rolled Best End of Lamb with a herb and apricot stuffing served with roasted parsnip, buttered mash and a port wine jus

Sirloin Steak with Hand Cut Chips, Grilled Tomato and Mushroom served plain grilled or a choice of sauce: creamy blue cheese, red wine and thyme butter, three peppercorn, brandy

Spinach, Mushroom and ricotta Rotolo, fresh pasta rolls, filled and baked with a creamy tomato and basil sauce

Chorizo Stuffed Chicken Supreme with a Rich Thyme Jus served with wilted spinach and sea salt and olive crushed new potatoes

Pancetta Roasted Monkfish with Red Pepper Pesto, served with tenderstem broccoli and a saffron potato fondant

Slow Roasted pork Belly, spiced apple puree, buttered spinach and truffle mash

Butter Nut Squash and Asparagus Risotto.

There are also comfort foods including burgers, lasagne and Sussex Smokie with Crusty Bread, light bites and sharing boards and children’s choices and drinks.

*You might also be interested in a blog from Uckfield Framing Company about the framing of the Picture House Restaurant posters: Now showing at the local Picture House … Restaurant!

See also:

Bad day for Uckfield rail line commuters

New dance class for pre-schoolers coming to Uckfield

Police called to fights in Uckfield

Find local businesses in our Uckfield Directory

How to advertise on UckfieldNews.com

 

 

 

 

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