Date of closure: 1987
Address (for reference only):
The Rex in Cardenden was located on Station Road, just a stone’s throw away from The Cinema, on Derran Drive, which it replaced. The latter still stands, nowadays as a carpet store!
The hall was opened in 1938, and went over to bingo in 1962. The imposing building was taken over by MBE (Minor Bingo Entertainments), who also ran the De Luxe, Lochgelly.
Closure came in 1987, and it was demolished one summer Sunday in 1991. The site is now a car park.
No shots of the interior, or of the hall’s exterior as a cinema, are known to exist. However, the hall had a similar interior to that at Eastbourne. The café was unusually located in the hall itself, and was opened all day. When bingo wasn’t in progress, kids were allowed in the cafe, and a curtain was drawn, separating it from the rest of the hall.
Little is known of MBE, who ran the hall. I think they may have been absorbed into Mecca Bingo.
While the loss of the hall was a blow to Cardenden, bingo players could still go to Bowhill club for a tri weekly dose of the game. As the likes of Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy, and Cowdenbeath are a short bus journey away, and the Carlton at Dunfermline easy to reach by car, it would appear that, in the end, little inconvenience was caused.
The reason for closure was it was uneconomical; that’s not surprising. At the time of closure, Cardenden had a population of 3,500. Today, the population is more that 5,000. The rates, and running costs of such an enormous hall, must have been big, and with such a small population, not surprising it was losing money.
By Robert Clark (April 2011)