Basic Biographical Details

Name: William Edward Trent
Designation: Architect
Born: 1874
Died: 1948
Bio Notes: William Edward Trent was born in 1874 and articled to Henry Poston of Lombard Street, London in 1892 and remained with him as assistant until 1905 when he commenced independent practice in London. During his time with Poston he attended the Architectural Association's evening classes. From 1909 he began specialising in cinema design, leading to his appointment first as salaried Chief Architect to Provincial Cinematograph Theatres and then as architect to the Gaumont British Picture Corporation which took over PCT in 1929. Prior to that date his son William Sydney Trent had joined the practice. Born in 1903 William Sydney had studied at the Architectural Association and received its diploma in 1923. When his father became a full-time employee of PCT William Sydney took over his private practice, retaining him as consultant. This arrangement lasted until 1932 when he joined Gaumont British to assist his father with the massive increase in work load following the introduction of 'talkie' films.

William Sydney predeceased his father dying in 1944; William Edward died in 1948. He never sought membership of the RIBA.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1123, Regent Street, London, EnglandBusinessBefore 1928After 1945Offices of Gaumont British Picture Corporation

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 4Henry Poston1892c. 1897Apprentice 
Item 2 of 4Henry Postonc. 18971905Assistant 
Item 3 of 4Provincial Cinematograph Theatres Architect's Department (PCT)After 19091929Chief Architect 
Item 4 of 4Gaumont British Picture Corporation Architect's Department1929 Chief Architect 

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architect (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 4Cecil Jack Foster19261929Apprentice 
Item 2 of 4James MorrisonApril 1927After 1928Assistant 
Item 3 of 4Daniel MacKay (or McKay)19291944Assistantworking in the Architect's Department of Gaumont British Picture Corporation
Item 4 of 4William Sydney TrentBefore 19291929(?)Assistant(?) 


RIBA Proposals

This architect proposed the following individuals for RIBA membership (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate proposedNotes
Item 1 of 1Daniel MacKay (or McKay)10 April 1945for Licentiateship

Buildings and Designs

This architect was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 21930New Victoria Cinema  EdinburghScotland 
Item 2 of 21938Gaumont CinemaAlloa ClackmannanshireScotland 


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect:
Item 1 of 5Altwell, D1980Cathedrals of the Movies   
Item 2 of 5Earl and Sell2000Guide to British Theatres, 1750-1950 London 
Item 3 of 5Eyles, Allen1996Gaumont British Cinemas   
Item 4 of 5Eyles, Allen and Skone, Keith1991London's West End Cinemas Sutton, Surrey: Keystone PublicationsAlso 1984 edition
Item 5 of 5Gray, Richard1996Cinemas in Britain London: Lund Humphries