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Exeter Picturehouse sits on the site of a 1930s bus garage within the city walls.

The cinema was opened in 1996. With assistance from the National Lottery through the Arts Council, City Screen (now Picturehouse Cinemas) engaged architects Burrell Foley Fischer to design a stylish, modern cinema on a challenging location that included a steep slope from front to back and a need to complement the historic location. The site was found to contain numerous small Roman artefacts when it was explored prior to redevelopment.