New Empire Theatre, Southend-on-Sea

Information on the New Empire Theatre, located just off Southend’s main High Street, in Alexandra Road. This page includes a brief history and some photos.

The New Empire Theatre closed in November 2008.
We have no information on future plans for this theatre

Until 2008, the New Empire was a self-funded theatre that was run by volunteers, and was available to local theatrical groups and performers.


Current Status

The New Empire Theatre closed in November 2008, after the tenants operating New Empire Theatre were unable to pay the rent, and the building’s owners, Shea Properties, regained possession and shut the theatre.

The building remains closed and is on sale via commercial property agents Ayers and Cruiks

New Empire Theatre November 2011
Photo of the New Empire Theatre, taken November 2011


New Empire Theatre Close-up 2011
New Empire Theatre Close-up – Taken November 2011


New Empire Theatre Rear View 2011
New Empire Theatre Rear View, taken November 2011


The original Empire Theatre was first opened in 1871. The building was converted to the Rivoli Picture House in the early 1920s, and from 1962 to 1998, it was the home of the ABC Cinema (briefly known as the Cannon in the 1980s).

After its closure as a cinema in 1998, the building was painstakingly converted back to a theatre, and used for local community shows and events, until its eventual closure in 2008.

New Empire Theatre in 2000
The New Empire Theatre, as it was in 2000



Address: 22 Alexandra Street, Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS1 1BU

Click here for Streetmaps map (Looking for info on Visiting Southend?)

Box Office Tel: 01702 – 353577


More on the New Empire

To see what the theatre looked like from the inside in 2015, go here: 28 Days Later


In Southend | Southend News | Weather | Travel | Southend Radio | Southend TV | Southend Photos