The Glebe Moving Picture Show opened in 1910 and had a dramatic impact on Glebe life, and a night at the “pictures” quickly gained wide popularity.
84 Glebe Point Road
John ‘Jack’ Law, proprietor of the Glebe Moving Picture Show
The Glebe Moving Picture Show at 84 GPR opened in 1910, having previously operated as a metal polish manufacturing site. Glebe historian Max Solling comments, “It had a dramatic impact on local folk, with its accessibility and relatively cheap admission prices. Now in the evening more and more husbands escorted their wives down Glebe Road for a night at the ‘pictures’. But the cinema was not without its detractors; publicans grumbled it was ruining their business while local clergy, and some councillors, saw it as a pernicious influence that would lead the residents down the path to moral decay.”
Jack Law, the proprietor, boosted patronage by staging boxing exhibitions and vaudeville acts by ‘Reckless Reggie’ before the show. The building was shared, at various times, by a billiard saloon, a hairdresser and a confectioner.
The Laws were one of a number of extended families who made Glebe their home. They were Methodists. ‘Jack’ Law, born in 1857, was one of 12 children (9 survived childhood) and lived all his life in Glebe. Like his father and brother George, he described himself as a ‘dealer’, ie, a trader or merchant. He married Alice Blanche May at Glebe in 1877 and they had eight children.
After Law’s death in 1926 and that of his wife Alice three years later, the Glebe Motion Picture Theatre continued under other proprietors but seems to have closed in the mid-1930s.
This building has been the home of the Glebe Youth Service since 1995.