Express & Star

Dudley Ladies Luncheon enjoy latest meeting


Chairman Ann Rogers welcomed 31 members for a three-course meal at The Lodge, Wellington Road, Dudley and to hear speaker Mr Ned Williams’ talk entitled '100 Years of Cinema'.

Mr Williams started with the invention of the bioscope in 1890 and ended with the blockbusters of today. Although originally starting life in France they arrived in London in 1896 to help with science rather than entertainment. Bioscope shows went around with fairs pulled by horse drawn drays, Pat Collins calling them novel attractions.

In 1910 purpose built cinemas arrived showing a 10 minute film followed by 10 minutes of variety. They were not particularly hygienic often infested with fleas - hence the nickname flea pits. The silent films were accompanied by two or three musicians and, of course, a chucker-out. The first sound film was The Jazz Singer and later Gone with the Wind went worldwide.

Although cinemas were closed due to the black out at the beginning of the Second World War they soon reopened and reached a peak in 1945, from then on attendance has declined, the final straw being Covid.

The next luncheon will be on Friday, May 10 at The Lodge 12pm for 12.30pm departing at 3pm when the speaker will be Dr Javid Hashemi on 'The fascinating history of egg cups' and on the June 14 Rodney Paul on The Falkland Islands.

Visitors are most welcome and can attend three times before deciding to join. For more information ring Chairman Ann Rogers on 01384 274388 or secretary on 01902 372984 email

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