Gary Lewis paid tribute to a historic cinema where his parents had their first date - and he is just one of many people who saw the Leytonstone Picture Palace recreated.

The cinema - also known as The Rialto - opened in 1911 and became a fixture of the High Road for more than 60 years before it closed in 1974. It was demolished two years later.

Earlier this month, it was recreated in an exhibition by Walthamstow artist Dominic Stinton and featured three films shown at the cinema in its 1920s heyday.

The Rialto has been described as a popular venue and would have held special memories for many people.

For Mr Lewis, 55, the cinema was where his parents Raymond and Ellen had their first date watching the Bond film Dr No in 1962.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series:

The Rialto cinema. Photo: UGC

Mr Lewis said: “They met in a pub, and my dad asked her if she would like to see the new James Bond film.”

He described how the cinema experience has changed from 1962: “They got a B movie, the main feature, and Pathe news. There was an intermission and the usher came out with sweets, drinks, cigarettes and confectionary, and then the film got going again.

"Also there were so many smokers that sometimes you couldn’t see the film!”

According to Mr Lewis, the two "grew on each other" and were married 18 months later.

The 55-year-old was born less than six months after his parents married, on September 7, 1964.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series:

Gary Lewis and artist Dominic Stinton. Photo: UGC

Now in their seventies, his parents are still very much in love with each other, Mr Lewis said.

Cinema admissions plummeted as more and more families came to own televisions, leading to The Rialto cinema closing in 1974.

The Rialto came back to life on September 12 in the Stone Space gallery in Leytonstone - just a few hundreds yards from where the original cinema stood. The cinema's last projectionist Nigel Mantell also attended the event.

There will be a talk by the artist, Mr Stinton, on Sunday, October 6, 3-5pm.

The exhibition is part of the Leytonstone Loves Film programme of events commissioned by Waltham Forest London Borough of Culture.