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Malcolm Wheatley

Malcolm Wheatley was born in 1914 and has been a resident of the Fairfield since his father began working in the original Wheatleys store. He recalls many events from his and Fairfield's history here.

A huge corrugated building near the station called The Butterfly was the venue for the silent films which was the first Theatre in Fairfield and a skating rink. The orchestra comprised two violins and a piano. They were positioned on a platform as you entered the theatre. There was a little ladder leading up onto the platform where they used to, think the place used to shake to its foundations. High above the seat accessible (.. unclear ..) in the light beam of the project all sorts of projectiles were flung in the air, whistling and roaring out at the baddies, the men, the boys and the men always whistling. Mostly westerns, the type we only went to see including grandad Wheatley. Constructed... being constructed of corrugated iron, during the silent break of the film, someone wielding a stick would run along the outside of the corrugation making machine-like noise and frighten the life out of us.

The second picture show was in The Crescent near Payne's butchery. And the first talkie film shown in Fairfield was the Greyhound Limited, with Monty Blue. The next theatre built still stands at the end of The Crescent on the site of Alf Bagley’s garage. The Crescent theatre on the corner of Ware and Spencer Street.

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