Scala Cinema

Last Of The Crazy Houses

Not long ago I went to a place called Pyramiden, an abandoned Russian mining town in one of the northernmost points in the Arctic Circle. You have to carry rifles because of polar bear attacks, and the temperature reaches minus 40 degrees. The icy wasteland has kept the deserted settlement intact, and there’s a cinema […]

Autumn’s coming. Kill Me Now.

Everyone else seems to love it, but I dread autumn. The first brown leaves send a chill down my spine. I’ve already had the season’s first cold (caught in the UK, of course) and now the nights are shortening, filling me with thoughts of the grave. This depression arises for several reasons; partly, it’s the […]

London’s Cinema Of Sin Is Coming Back

A million people walked (or often fell) through the doors of London’s Scala cinema between June 1978-June 1993. Most of them staggered out. Now my old friend Jane Giles, who was the life and soul of the 24 hour party that was London’s Scala Cinema, has written a book on this scurrilous subject, which promises […]

They’re Tough To Run But We Need These

Britain may once have been a nation of shopkeepers but it’s not anymore. In a world of corporate brandssuch places are a breath of fresh air; those weird small shops and privately owned places that make a neighbourhood special. London always had thousands, but can they still be found? I speak as someone who remembers […]