Kinema in the Woods – Woodhall Spa’s historical cinema

I consider myself extremely lucky to live so close to one of the most culturally important cinemas in the country. Why is it so important? Because it’s a classic cinema. It has been used as a cinema since 1922 and it remains virtually untouched to this day. To visit the Kinema in the woods is to truly step back in time. We recently took Jamie to see Disney’s beauty and the beast (PG), read more in my review of the Kinema in the Woods below. The Kinema is in Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire.

Review Kinema in the Woods, Woodhall Spa

Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema
Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema

I’m sure that you can tell by my photo that the Kinema in the Woods is truly somewhere special. It really brings a trip to the cinema to life for me. I get a real sense of excitement when we visit. You can book online but you can’t reserve seats and you do still have to queue to show your ticket. But I quite enjoy going to the ticket window here. True to the cinema it’s like stepping back in time. You even get a paper stub ticket for the film.

Are you ready to step back in time? The lobby area at the Kinema in the Woods will do just that. I really need to arrive nice and early one day just to have time to peruse their cabinets of film memorabilia.

Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema

It may not be the biggest Lobby in the world but it’s probably the most intriguing one. There’s even a Dalek to pose for a photo by. Not that Jamie had a clue what it was! I had to laugh at their waste bins dotted around the place, practical yet obvious. They are currently selling movie posters but in the past, they’ve had a really good selection of secondhand Disney DVD’s that you can buy for next to nothing. Yes, Jamie brought a stuffed toy seal with him!

Review Kinema in the Woods, Woodhall Spa

Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema

Drinks and snacks are all fairly priced at the Kinema in the woods. We spend a fraction here than if we were to go into town. I can highly recommend the sweet popcorn.

The ice cream stand is always busy during the interval. They even sell tubs of my favourite local ice cream Dennett’s.

For Beauty and the Beast we were in the smaller screen 2. It’s possibly about half the size of screen one but that doesn’t spoil the viewing of the film. I’ve always enjoyed the quality of the picture at the Kinema and the volume is always spot on.

Screen two has quite a few hand painted pictures on the wall. and the lights are simply stunning.

Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema

Just like in screen one they have curtains over the screen that are drawn when the film and adverts aren’t showing. The seats are very comfortable and you can collect a booster seat for your child if you need one.

In screen one there are even places to hang your coats. The organist comes up through the floor for most, but not all, intervals in screen one.

The organist is an experience in itself. We’ve seen him all three times that we’ve been in screen one. It reminds me of the music from an old film, before talking.

Beauty and the beast

Disney’s remake of Beauty and the beast seems to be drawing in young and old. When we took Jamie he was the only child there and it was reasonably busy (it was a school day but I was expecting other younger kids). The film is a PG but in all honesty, it was a lot older than I was expecting. I had convinced myself he’d be OK as he loves the animated version that we watch sometimes at home. Jamie was a little scared in places though.

But he is only 3 and this film is probably aimed more at the older child. Once he was sat on my knee he was OK as I could talk him through anything that I thought may scare him. In the end, he took everything else in his stride, it was only the wolves that he disliked. When we left the cinema he said his favourite bit was the fighting. So certainly not too sensitive to the darker bits.

He has asked about a thousand times since when can we go see Beauty and the beast again. In fact, he’s constantly checking if it’s still on, even though I’ve said we will go see Boss baby next time.

We really enjoyed the singing in the film. The dinner scene for ‘Be our guest’ was absolutely stunning. Jamie has been singing it ever since. Trouble is none of us know more than that line. “Tale as old as time” didn’t let me down either. It was a very good feel good film at the end. It did, however, show it’s darker sides more than it’s lighter. I am sure that the wolf scenes would be a lot less scary at home than in a cinema.

We were pleasantly surprised at the end to discover who some of the characters had actually been voiced by.

About the Kinema in the Woods, Woodhall Spa – Review

The Kinema is located in the woods of Woodhall Spa, in the heart of Lincolnshire. I have many many reasons to love Woodhall Spa which I am sure I will share with you in time. For now, we are celebrating this fabulous cinema.

Kinema in the woods history – Originally the Kinema was a farm building and it had a few other uses before becoming the Pavilion cinema in 1922. At the time it was the 68th cinema in the UK. It is thought to be the only cinema still with rear projection in the country (screen 1). There are two screens, screen one being the largest. This is where the organist comes up through the floor during the interval. There is a piano in screen 2 but we are yet to see it in use.

Adults are £6.50, seniors £5.50, Children 14 & under £5.50 and a family ticket is £22.40. This makes the cinema a much more affordable thing to do than the bigger chains. As well as showing current movies they also show old classics. You can check their film releases and films showing here. They also show theatre productions, operas, Shakespeare plays etc.

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Kinema in the Woods - Woodhall Spa's historical cinema


  1. What an amazing place! We have 2 old cinemas in Oxford, but nothing like this place! I’d love to step back in time really expereince the wonder that was the first motion pictures. Just imagine when people thought it was magic!

  2. Oh wow this place looks so special. Love the look of it. Lucky you live near it. We had a cinema we used to go to when I was younger and a man used to sit and play the accordion half way through the film. It was such a classic cinema. Unfortunately it has now been torn down and replaced by flats x

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