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If you look at number 192-194 Clapham High Street, it looks rather grand for a corner shop. It has a fine tall classical façade finished in expensive ceramic tiles. This was supposed to be the entrance to the Coliseum Cinema in Venn Street where the Picturehouse now stands. In 1910 the Electric Picture Palace had opened there, on the site of a former stables. In 1919 a new magnificent cinema was designed, with a proposed entrance on the High Street, and surrounding buildings were purchased for expansion. However, the company ran into financial difficulties and the cinema never opened. The Coliseum would have had almost 3,000 seats.
The site was turned into a snooker hall and remained so until 1992, when Clapham Picturehouse opened its doors to the public for the first time. In 1998 a fourth screen was added and the cafe-bar was extended to meet its ever-growing popularity as a local hangout for film fans. In 2008 the entrance foyer and cafe-bar were renovated and restyled, further cementing the venue as a cultural and social landmark in the community.