Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing under the Planning (Listing Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997 is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see 'About Listed Buildings' below for more information. The further details below the 'Address/Name of Site' are provided for information purposes only.

Address/Name of Site


Status: Designated


There are no additional online documents for this record.


Date Added
Local Authority
Dumfries And Galloway
Planning Authority
Dumfries And Galloway
NY 31799 67187
331799, 567187


C M Crickmer, 1916-18. Single-storey, 3-bay classical, near symmetrical former cinema set back from street with projecting central portico with later dormer above, and with gabled auditorium to rear (currently store, 2010). Red brick with raised moulded architraves: painted rear section. Principal elevation to street with base course, contrasting moulded cornice with deep brick band above. Later (post 1985) boundary wall to street, surmounted by railings and with banded pillars.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: Steps lead to central, slightly advanced, distyle in antis portico with flanking banded pilasters and with 3 later, non-traditional part-glazed 2-leaf entrance doors. Flanking single windows. Central flat-roofed wallhead dormer above with 3-window openings and alternate moulded panels.

6-over 9-pane and 6-over 6-pane timber sash and case windows to street elevation. Piended roof to entrance. Grey slates. Metal urn-shaped ridge vents to auditorium.

INTERIOR: (seen 2010). Auditorium partly raked and with later part flat dance floor. Simple proscenium arch. Some decorative metal vents.

Statement of Special Interest

This is an early surviving former cinema which has been little altered externally and retains some internal features. It forms a significant feature in the streetscape of the main thoroughfare in Gretna. The classical temple portico entrance is a fine decorative feature in a building that was built quickly to provide entertainment for a large numbers of workers at the nearby munitions factory during WWI. It was listed in the Kinematograph Year book of 1947 as having 600 seats. The screen area was widened in the 1950s to accommodate the arrival of Cinemascope and the auditorium underwent some alteration in the 1960s when a dance floor was laid in part of it. In the 1970s, the interior was adapted for Bingo, and a second, smaller stage was erected in the centre of the auditorium in the 1990s. The building ceased to be used for Bingo in 2008 and is currently in use as a store.

The oldest surviving purpose built cinema in Scotland is thought to be the Hippodrome at Bo-ness, constructed in 1912 (see separate listing). This is a rare example of a cinema constructed during the 1st World War and purposefully also as a direct result of the war.

Built in 1916-18, the cinema was erected to provide entertainment for the large numbers of workers hired to work in the nearby munitions factory. The British Government was concerned during the course of the First World War that there was a lack of ammunition for the British troops, and it commissioned a large munitions factory to be built. It stretched for 9 miles along the banks of the Solway and produced cordite explosives. Thousands of workers were brought in from around Britain and Ireland to work at the factory and temporary timber and more permanent brick housing was erected to accommodate first the builders of the factory and then its workers. The township was designed along Garden City lines, with green spaces surrounding the houses and in an ordered plan. The chief architect was Raymond Unwin, with C M Crickmer acting as resident architect. This former cinema is situated in the central avenue of the town, between rows of shops. A railway originally ran up this central street. As well as housing, the workers and their families required buildings to provide for leisure and other buildings in the township included several churches, a dance hall, a school and this cinema. After the war, the factory was dismantled and only a few remnants of it remain.

Courtenay Melville Crickmer (1879-1971) was an English architect, who practised in London and Letchworth. In Scotland, he was responsible for a number of the buildings in Gretna and nearby Eastriggs.



Ordnance Survey Map (1951). John Gifford, Dumfries & Galloway, The Buildings of Scotland (1996) p333. Dictionary of Scottish Architects (accessed 25-11-10). Rhona Wilson, Old Gretna (1999) p30. Gordon Routledge, Gretna's Secret War (1999) p25. Other information courtesy of owner.

About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Other than the name or address of a listed building, further details are provided for information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland does not accept any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a consequence of inaccuracies in the information provided. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

Listed building consent is required for changes to a listed building which affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. The relevant planning authority is the point of contact for applications for listed building consent.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at


There are no images available for this record, you may want to check Canmore for images relating to GRETNA VILLAGE, 121 CENTRAL AVENUE, FORMER GRETNA CINEMA

There are no images available for this record.

Search Canmore

Printed: 04/03/2024 02:39