Preserving the Magic of Cinema: “To locate, preserve, renovate and exhibit the equipment and data, past and present, of still and moving images”

Preserving the Magic of Cinema

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Welcome to the home of the Projected Picture Trust..



From the 1960’s onwards, ‘Picture Palaces’ were being boarded up, turned into bingo halls, split into multiscreens or razed to the ground for redevelopment.Projection equipment was being thrown into skips or sold for scrap. It was these developments that in 1978 led to the birth of the PPT by the then BFI Technical Officer, Charles Beddow. Convinced that much of Britain’s arts heritage would be lost forever, he successfully created a steering committee and the rest, as they say, is history.
 Run by an eclectic mix of respected industry professionals and cinema enthusiasts, the trust boasts a world-class collection of cinema technology artifacts and a growing digital archive that will eventually become an accessible hub of knowledge for just about anyone interested in finding out more about this fascinating, if often overlooked side of our much-loved business. Combined with an impressive portfolio of real-world expertise, ideas as grand as the films we screen and hardworking, enthusiastic volunteers, the PPT has the potential to become a world leader in the field of cinema technology preservation.
What We Do

What We Do


The Projected Picture Trust aims to EducatePreserve and Restore cinema equipment. The Trust also has one of the largest technical archives of its time anywhere which is available to members (by appointment). The Trust has locations throughout the United Kingdom with local co-ordinators for members to get involved.


It is the intention of the PPT to expand this side of our work in that, based on the principal, more educational visits will be promoted.


Educational Visits

The Educational side of the Trust’s work is becoming more and more important and as further regional centres open they will be able to co-operate with local schools, media colleges, and other establishments that have an interest in moving and still images.



The majority of the preserved equipment is held at our new storage facility in Halifax
Unfortunately, storage in the regions is very limited and relies very much upon the regional co-ordinator and their local members to store equipment on their premises. It is one of our objectives to be able to provide storage for each of the regions.
The PPT has a number of pieces of equipment on show for the general public to take an interest in and these are situated in a variety of sites.


Renovation is a very important aspect of the Trust’s activities since there is really no point collecting anything unless you can make it work properly. In other words, so far as projectors are concerned, we like to renovate to the point that film can be shown again on the projector.
Renovation takes place in many parts of the country, either in centres where members may meet and work or on their own premises.
These various sites, together with other regions around the country have Regional Co-ordinators.
We are very much encouraging younger members and potential members into the very interesting renovation works.
The PPT is limited in the space it has available to exhibit all the renovated equipment and therefore we have to ‘mothball’ such completed works ready for immediate exhibition or loan etc.


Locations and Regions

The PPT has always aimed to be a truly national organisation that is accessible to all of its members whether you are in John O’Groats or Lands’ End. To this end, we have coordinators throughout the country, many with their own dedicated base. While this is what the trusts strives for it is not always possible.



"Rewind" is the Magazine of PPT which is published four times a year for it's members. It is available either in printed format or as a PDF. Contributions are always welcomed from the trust's members. You can contact our Rewind Editor via email: rewind@ppttrust.org.

Below are some examples taken from the Rewind






The Archive

The Archive

The PPT has a very comprehensive database on which is catalogued (most of!) the equipment holdings of the Trust together with what the Trust holds by way of instruction manuals, technical drawings, equipment catalogues, sales brochures etc.

Also held by the Trust are various periodicals such as those produced by the Cinema Theatre Association, Mercia Society, The British Kinematograph Sound & Television Society, S.M.P.T.E., USA, Screen International etc. A number of these journals are incomplete and one of our key aims where the archive is concerned is to try and expand our collection to make coverage more comprehensive.

It is hoped to be able to get the archive catalogue online to search in the future, but in the meantime if you have any questions or queries then please drop the archivist an email at archivist@pptTrust.org

“The PPT has in it’s archive many Magazines/Periodicals, (which continues to grow).



Magazines Wanted

If you have any magazines in our wanted list that you would be willing to donate to the Trust, please contact the archivist. We are happy to discuss trades for magazines in our duplicates list should you wish to obtain any of these.”



Why should you consider joining the PPT?

The PPT can only achieve its full potential with a strong, diverse and enthusiastic membership. With membership as far afield as Australia and Los Angeles and a number of exciting projects in the pipeline including plans to open a new museum on the outskirts of London, there is plenty of scope to meet fellow enthusiasts, learn new skills and help the PPT achieve its vision. Alongside our restoration activities and special projects, we have a long-term commitment to expand our remit as an educational charity and increase our work with production companies, an activity that has seen us provide authentic machines and projectionists to a number of high-profile film and television productions. As a member, you will receive our quality in-house publication ‘Rewind’ four times a year and have full access to all areas of our website. Membership subscription rates per annum (May-April).    
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Supporters and Sponsors

The PPT is grateful to all our friends, supporters and sponsors without whom we would just not be able to achieve as much as we do. All of the below provide the trust with a variety of different things: