The Vintage Mobile Cinema (Reg KJU267E), better known these days as 'Audrey', is the last remaining vehicle of seven. They were made for the UK Government in the 1960's as part of Harold Wilson's 'White Heat of Technology'. Each cinema had a trailer that was used as a demonstration space. The scheme was operated by Pera and from 1967 they visited engineering firms around the UK and offered industrial training. Looking at ways that the companies could improve their production techniques.
The scheme was ended in 1974 and all the cinemas were auctioned off. 'Audrey' was purchased by Lord MacAlpine. He bought the cinema to help promote the return of the Flying Scotsman to the UK. The famous steam engine had run into trouble in the US.
Over the next 30 years, the other six mobile cinemas were destroyed and all the trailers had seemingly gone the same way.
In 2005, 'Audrey' had seen better days, She was rotting in a field in Essex, where she'd been for 13 years. Her engine was broken and the gear box had been stolen. It was at this point that Ollie Halls discovered her existance. He purchased her and started the most extraodinary restoration process. A very true restoration on the outside but inside he used modern AV equipment with a 1930's 'traditional' cinema feel including original art deco seats.
Five years later in 2010, the restoration was complete and the most beautiful vehicle hit the road once again. Since then, 'Audrey' has attended numerous festivals and events of all shapes and sizes across the UK along with the occasional voyage into mainland Europe.
In 2015, it had been 40 years since 'Audrey' and the original trailer had been seen together. The chances of finding the trailer after all this time were very remote. However a potential sighting of such a trailer was reported and the resulting visit to a farm in Sussex, unearthed something that had many of the aspects that we would hope to find - the size, the shape and even the colour. The definitive proof came when checking the registration plate - KJU267E. It was the same trailer!!
After the total astonishment had subsided, the farmer very kindly relinquished the trailer back to 'Audrey' and they were together again.
At this point, Ollie and Emma felt the time was right to pass 'Audrey' and her old trailer on to a new owner.
Ben Moorhouse has carried on Ollie's great work and 'Audrey' is now attending festivals and events all over the country from her base near Bicester, Oxfordshire.
The restoration of the trailer is a massive project and the reason for this Crowd Funding appeal. The plan is to restore the trailer back to the same beautiful condition as the Cinema. Rather than a demonstration space, we're opting to turn it into a useable event space including a cocktail bar. The same exterior from the 1960's but with a 1930's interior twist - just like the cinema.
Please look at the packages on offer and get involved. Thank you very much for any pledge you are willing to make, I have put together the very best series of suppliers to make this restoration a huge success. I look forward to welcoming you on board the finished trailer very soon!