Hornchurch’s art deco history uncovered

RENOVATION work on a historic Hornchurch building has uncovered a buried piece of the town’s past.

During the recent repainting of the Mecca bingo hall in High Street workmen peeled back the years and found the original art deco Towers sign from its original construction in the 1930s.

When it opened as a cinema in 1935 the building featured the huge stone letters spelling its name as Towers, which were carved into the upper level of the building’s fascia.

The name disappeared when it was taken over by the Rank cinema group and called the Odeon, which covered the old name over, leaving it buried and almost forgotten.

Deputy area manager Becky Reeves said: “We’ve uncovered the old art deco Tower sign which we are going to keep and repaint and make a focus.

“It just looks fabulous, it really looks great. It is art deco and it’s cut into the fabric of the building.

“We’re going to have photographs of the building in the bingo hall from when it opened to how it is now.”

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The bingo hall is coming to the end of an eight-week revamp, which has seen it repainted, new games added and a meals to tables order service added.

Becky said: “We’ve had lots of feedback from our customers about the sign and they absolutely love it.”