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The Rushden Echo, 1st July 1966, transcribed by Jim Hollis
Death of W. R. Hewitt

Directors, managers and staff of cinemas in Rushden and Wellingborough and friends and relatives attended the funeral of Mr. Wilfred Robert Hewitt on Tuesday.

Mr. Hewitt died last Saturday at his home, 107 Wellingborough Road, Rushden. He was managing director of the Palace Company (Wellingborough) Ltd, which runs the Palace Cinema and the Ritz, Rushden.


He was a retiring man, very artistic and well-liked by all who worked under him. Mr. C. J. Knighton, who became manager of the Ritz, Rushden, after Mr. Hewitt has said of him: “He was one of the best men you could wish to work with.”

The funeral service was held at Rushden Baptist Church, Park Road, and was followed by interment at Rushden Cemetery.

At one time Mr. Hewitt’s company ran four cinemas, The Regal, Wellingborough, now a supermarket, The Palace, Rushden, now a garage, and The Ritz, Rushden, and The Palace, Wellingborough.

Opened In 1910

The Palace at Rushden opened in 1910 and the Ritz in 1936, Mr. Hewitt, who was 68, had managed both of them. His position as manager of the Ritz was taken over by Mr. Knighton in 1956.

The company was founded by Mr. Hewitt’s father and the Brown family, of Wellingborough, who were pioneers of the cinema in the area.

Also at the funeral were representatives of the WVS, Rushden Central Townswomen’s Guild and the Rushden Dr. Barnardo’s Committee.

Mourners were: Mrs. Hewitt (widow), Mr. John Hewitt (son), and his wife, Mr. and Mrs. Bryan Stokes (son-in-law and daughter), Mr. and Mrs. C. T. Perkins (brother-in-law and sister), Miss Margaret Perkins (niece), Mrs. John Wallace Lea (sister-in-law) and Miss Rosemary Lea (niece), both from Harrow, Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Cobley (cousins), Mrs. Frances Thomas (cousin), and friends, Mrs. A. Haynes, Mrs. D. Dixon, Mrs. Grace Roper, Mrs. Lily Norman.

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