We are proud to advise that Time Cinema has always been a family owned and operated cinema. The vision of this private cinema was born almost 40 years ago when John Bell, the original founder of Time Cinema, purchased the property at 191 Sutherland Road along with his wife Margaret. Both John and Margaret shared a passion and a love of film. John had been an avid collector of cinema memorabilia since he was young and he decided to showcase his extensive collection of memorabilia in the garage at the back of the property. This garage was previously used for trucks. John started out by playing movies to friends and neighbours as a fun hobby. However, word spread and enquiries from people who had become aware that a cinema could be possible here, generated customer demand proving there was a need for something like this within the community. These enquiries culminated to a point where John realised that his vision of a small private cinema and museum was a sound idea, and Time Cinema was born. The collection of movie equipment has grown over the years, aided to a great extent by donations from visitors and film lovers who share the need to preserve what is rapidly starting to become history; that of the early days of film and the methods by which it was exhibited.
Lastly we would just like to add that we wish to make your visit here a very special experience in every way, from the surprise upon arrival to the programmes shown of years gone by.
We hope that your experience is a magical one and the memories of your visit remain with you forever.!
We can seat up to 39 in the cinema itself and this involves the use of an extra front row which is removable for the accommodation of wheelchairs. Without the use of this row, there are 31 fixed seats, and this is a number that has proved ideal when catering supplied by us requires the use of the tables and chairs available here.
You are welcome to bring your own and use our supervised kitchen facilities. Oven and microwave are available, as are our services to assist where required. We can supply crockery, glassware, platters, bowls, plates, cutlery etc. all of which are processed after use as required by the terms of our WCC Health Licence. Alternatively, we can supply various forms of catering that vary from just coffee, tea and biscuits, through to a nibbles menu, a lunch, and a light evening meal.
To have the most desired day and time, you need to plan as far ahead as possible to fit with our availability, and too, with those of your group, organisation or guests etc who may already be filling spaces in their diaries up to 8 weeks or more ahead. Fundraisers need to pre-sell and receive payment for their tickets, keeping in mind that under these circumstances it would be unusual for refunds to be required as their outlay would be considered in most cases to be a donation.
Our own library of titles allows for a very wide choice of feature and short film material, almost totally of a classic/nostalgia nature and mainly prior to the 1980’s. Suggestions of a feature film title from organisers is welcomed, and where possible, we will accommodate this or offer a close alternative. Where this proves to be a difficulty, and on confirmation of a booking, we can supply a short list of several hundred suggestions. We have a very large number of short film subjects, including newsreels, comedies, local and NZ nostalgia, pictorials etc, and a normal start to our programme includes some old commercials and the ‘Queen’. Selection of this material can fit with a birthday occasion, group interests, etc. etc.