Past News

    Please find below an archive of our News and Press Releases for the four weeks previous to the current News page.

    Week commencing Monday 1st July 2019

    LONDON (Leicester Square): Inside The Londoner, a new hotel for Leicester Square
    A building site next to Leicester Square will soon become a cinema and hotel — and recently there was a chance to look around while it’s still concrete and steel.
    ASHINGTON: Reel Cinemas confirmed as first new addition to site
    An operator has been confirmed for the new seven-screen cinema set to form the backbone of a divisive shopping and leisure development in Ashington.
    Independent cinema chain Reel Cinemas, which runs 14 other cinemas across the UK, has signed a deal with development company Advance Northumberland to open at the empty Portland Park site in the Northumberland town.

    BRADFORD: Work at former Odeon reveals view of auditorium 'not seen for 50 years'
    Developer Bradford Live, the group behind the redevelopment of the 1930s building, has been stripping out the steel and concrete partitions that divided the theatre’s original auditorium.
    Now the work has reintroduced a vast space not seen since 1969.

    BURY ST EDMUNDS: Abbeygate Cinema sets up 2020 Building Blocks Fundraising Campaign to help with major redevelopment
    Abbeygate Cinema, in Hatter Street, is currently in its first phase of the work, which in total is expected to cost hundreds of thousands of pounds, with a new foyer, toilets and fire exits due to be completed in September.
    Phase two, which will see the creation of a premier cinema screen in the former bingo hall, is due to start next spring and the cinema is appealing to its loyal customers to help deliver the plans.
    CHATHAM: IMAX cinema could be coming to ODEON Chatham Dockside
    A planning application has been submitted for the Odeon Cinema in Chatham Dockside, which if successful would see an illuminated IMAX sign installed.
    IMAX cinemas promise bigger screens, greater resolution and state-of-the-art sound.

    HELENSBURGH: Tower cinema expansion approved
    Helensburgh’s only cinema is set to extend its premises after council officials gave its plans the green light.
    An entrance foyer, bar, auditorium and four function suites are all on the agenda for the two-storey addition at The Tower, on the corner of West King Street and Sinclair Street.

    HERTFORD: Bennetts centre stage with £13.5m theatre expansion
    Bennetts Associates has been appointed by East Herts Council to design the £13.5m expansion of the Hertford Theatre.
    The 1977 theatre stands beside the River Lea and underwent a £1m revamp from St Albans practice Briffa Phillips in 2010.
    Bennetts’ project will see the theatre add three cinema screens, a 150-seat studio and more seats in the existing 400-seat auditorium.

    HUDDERSFIELD: Light Cinema to open Kingsgate in major town revamp
    Light Cinemas has signed a 25-year lease to operate the 9-screen cinema that will anchor new leisure and lifestyle space at the Kingsgate shopping centre in Huddersfield as the town itself is set to become the focus of a major town centre revamp.

    LEICESTER: Phoenix Cinema gets nearly £600k more for expansion that will double screens
    Bosses at the Cultural Quarter venue are looking to raise some £7.1 million to double the number of screens from two to four and create a larger bar and café, a roof terrace and an enlarged art gallery.

    LIVERPOOL (Huyton): Hidden former cinema that is now a Boots
    Many Merseyside towns have businesses operating out of former cinemas and they're usually easy to spot - but the one in Huyton Village has been covered up over time.
    The Mayfair Cinema opened in 1937 with the film The Plainsman, starring Gary Cooper, and could seat 676 people in the stalls - as well as a further 333 on the balcony seats above.
    MARLBOROUGH: Cinema to open ‘in New Year’
    Builders have moved into the former Congregational Chapel on Marlborough to convert it into a 120-seat cinema.
    And the man behind the project hopes it will be ready by Christmas.
    WELLINGTON: 'Lights, camera, action' as new cinema shows its first film
    The cinema is part of the Wellington Orbit project, which has seen the former bank building transformed into a community venue.
    Work on the project began in 2018, and the venue also includes a cafe and bar which opened in May.
    The new 63-seat cinema opened with the first ever screening at 10.30am on Saturday, 30 June.

    WOLVERHAMPTON: Demolition begins on former Atlantis nightclub
    Work has begun to knock down the former Faces nightclub to make way for the new plans which will be part of the City Learning Quarter scheme.
    It is a well-loved building, ending up as Faces but previously being known as Oceana and Atlantis. Before it was a nightclub, the site was home to the Savoy and ABC cinema.

    AUSTRALIA - SYDNEY: Roxy Theatre in Parramatta spared demolition after 'excessive' development proposal rejected
    Part of a heritage-listed theatre in Sydney's west has been spared from the wrecking ball after a court ruled against its development application.
    The plan, which was rejected by council last September, would have involved restoration and refurbishment of the forecourt and demolition of a rear section of the building, including much of the side walls, a roof truss structure and significant original decorative fabric.
    The City of Parramatta had argued previously the development was "excessive" and would have an adverse impact of the heritage significance of the building.
    The Heritage Council also took issue, describing it as "an outstanding and rare surviving example of Spanish Mission theatre design".

    USA - SAN PEDRO (California): The Warner Grand Theatre, a gem from the golden age of cinema
    The refurbishing of the theater has been proceeding, sometimes in fits and starts, for over 20 years.
    This is clearly noticeable when one steps into the 1,500-seat auditorium, it’s mezzanine alone able to accommodate more patrons than many of today’s shoebox theaters.
    After the marquee and its accompanying neon, beacon-like vertical sign were restored in the late 1990s, Grand Vision launched its Save the Seats campaign in 2003.

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    Week commencing Monday 24th June 2019

    ASHFORD: Grade II status could save Mecca Bingo building
    Campaigners hoping to save a former Mecca Bingo building from partial demolition have lodged an application to protect the site.
    The Cinema Theatre Association (CTA) has written to Historic England calling for the landmark Lower High Street spot in Ashford to be given Grade II-listed status.

    BELFAST: Movie House Cinema closing date delayed until the end of the summer at least
    Tech firm Kainos bought the cinema land in February and the theatre was due to close at the end of May

    BRADFORD: £1 million lottery boost for Odeon development
    A £959,500 grant announced recently will see The National Lottery Heritage Fund act as expert advisers to Bradford Live - the group that is overseeing the transformation of the iconic city centre building.

    COLCHESTER: Plans for new £70m leisure and retail park with cinema
    A multi-million pound retail and leisure park on the outskirts of Colchester has taken its “next vital step” in a long-running planning battle.

    GREAT YARMOUTH: Cinema to reopen following multi-million pound investment from new operators
    The Irish-based Arc Cinema group is to take over the running of the former Hollywood cinema in Marine Parade, which has been empty since February this year.
    Visitors to the cinema, which will reopen in the final couple of months of this year can expect a "luxury" experience as plans for recliner seating, a new state-of-the-art sound system and 4k digital projection take shape.

    PORT TALBOT: Views requested on pans for historic Plaza Cinema
    People are being asked for their views on Neath Port Talbot Council’s plans to give a new lease of life to the art-deco former Plaza Cinema building in Port Talbot’s town centre.
    The Council has commissioned Asbri Planning Ltd to undertake pre-application consultation on proposals to convert the Grade 11 listed building into a multi-purpose community hub...

    SIDCUP: Cinema plan submitted
    Plans for a three-screen cinema on Sidcup High street have been submitted.
    The building will also include a library and nine flats on the former site of Blockbuster which has remained empty since 2013. A cafe will also face the High Street.

    YEOVIL: ...could get second cinema as part of multi-million shopping centre expansion
    "The early plans focus more on the experience, creating great public spaces for meeting and socialising, leisure facilities such as restaurants, a cinema and bars, plus new business accommodation..."
    "This is a golden opportunity that most towns and cities would love to have."

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    Week commencing Monday 17th June 2019

    LONDON (Tooting): Granada – A palace to the golden age of cinema
    In the 1930s, when Tooting was mostly farms, a grand cinema was built, and it’s still there today, and still open to the public.
    This the Granda Tooting, the only Grade I listed cinema from the 1930s in the UK, thanks in no small part to the grand exterior, but mainly the eye wateringly astonishing interior.

    AUCHTERARDER: Historic Perthshire cinema building could be saved from demolition
    Developers secured planning consent to tear down the former Regal picture house in Auchterarder, despite a plea from cinema historians who described it as a “rare” example of 1920s design.
    The Townhead building could be given a new lease of life, when it goes under the hammer later this year... and is expected to sell for around £200,000.

    AXBRIDGE: Couple build Britain’s smallest cinema with only 34 seats in the back room of their converted country pub
    David Maclay, 72, and his wife Juliet, 61, created the cinema in Somerset in 2007. It is housed inside an 18th-century coaching inn they bought ten years earlier.
    The picture house, one of the smallest in the UK, puts on three showings a week.

    BLACKBURN: Pictures reveal Reel progress at new multi-million cinema
    Bad weather hasn’t deterred progress on Blackburn’s new multi-million cinema development.
    Work is continuing to progress on the new Reel Cinema being built on the old Waves site despite prolonged periods of rain over the last month.

    BODMIN: Cornwall's newest cinema is closer to opening and is hiring
    The Merlin Cinemas venue is set to open this year in the old Public Rooms on Bodmin's Mount Folly
    The grade two building, which was built in the 19th century for community use, is now being transformed into a four-screen cinema.

    BRADFORD: Work underway on Bradford Live scheme
    Many of the original art deco features have been revealed for the first time in more than 40 years, as the concrete from the 1960s cinema structure is stripped out.
    The next stage of development will be the start of the renovation and restoration works, ahead of the re-opening in the 2020/21 season

    BRADFORD: Bradford Live grand plans spark excitement at preview event
    “We really want to put Bradford back on the map for major touring artists." These were the words of the NEC Group's Phil Mead as he spoke during a glitzy event to preview plans to bring the former Odeon cinema back into use.

    DUNDEE: Revamp will see complex one of the top cinemas in the country
    A mulitplex cinema in Dundee is set to undergo a dramatic renovation to make it one of the best in the country – with the operator pledging to stay in the city until at least 2035.
    Planning documents submitted to Dundee City Council appear to hint that cinema chain Odeon has big plans for its branch in Douglas.

    EDINBURGH: Cinema part of shopping centre revamp
    Shopping centre bosses have submitted plans to build a new cinema as part of a revamp of the Gyle Centre in Edinburgh.
    Plans have been handed over to city council to extend the shopping centre into the existing car park - resulting in the loss of hundreds of spaces.

    GRIMSBY: Bingo's 100th birthday - how the classic game rose to huge popularity in Grimsby and Cleethorpes
    Although the exact origins of bingo are somewhat of a mystery, it is widely thought that it began life in Italy, evolving from the Italian Lottery ‘Lo Guioco del Lotto D’Italia’.
    The game moved from country to country and is understood to have arrived in England in the early 1920s - it soon spread nationwide, with Grimsby being no exception and has been in play for what is believed to be 100 years.

    KETTERING: A new use for disused Granada Cinema/Gala Bingo sites?
    The Gala Bingo Club closed on 7th June 2018 and the building has been purchased to become a banquet hall.
    But what was found on Friday 14 June 2019 was not the intended use...

    MANCHESTER: A new cinema with £2.50 tickets and VR gaming is coming to city centre
    Chapeltown Picture House will be taking over a loft space at Crusader Mill, the grade II-listed building that is currently being transformed into apartments.
    When the venue, which is set close to Manchester Piccadilly, isn't operating as a cinema, the big screen will be given over to free play video gaming.

    MILTON KEYNES: Shopping centre targets boutique cinema operator to help secure its future
    The biggest shopping centre in Milton Keynes has been given permission to expand so it can attract a range of new businesses – including a boutique cinema.
    The developers say: “Boutique cinemas, such as, Everyman and Curzon remain keen on Milton Keynes but only for the right opportunity."

    SOUTHPORT: Long-awaited independent cinema set to open
    Plans to open the Southport Bijou Cinema first became reality for film-lover Michael Lockwood when he bought an empty restaurant building three years ago and set about recruiting a team to transform the venue into a state-of-the-art facility.
    "...we can’t wait to open to you all as soon as it’s possible: I assure you, though it’s taken and is taking time, it is coming in 2019."

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    WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY 10th June 2019

    LONDON (Walthamstow): In pictures: Curtain raised on plans for historic cinema
    Architect Pilbrow & Partners’ plans to convert a grade II-listed cinema in east London into a live performance venue have been revealed.
    The main refurbishment work is expected to start next summer, with the new venue due to be completed by early 2022.

    BURY ST EDMUNDS: Long-standing plans for arthouse cinema are 'coming to fruition'
    The six-figure project to merge the existing cinema and restaurant in Hatter Street with the derelict Winners Bingo areas is now underway, with hopes for this first phase of work to be complete by the end of September.

    GREAT YARMOUTH: 'Patience is a virtue' - Comeback on the cards for town's cinema
    The Hollywood Cinema on Marina Parade closed in February, after the chain behind it ceased trading.
    However, the building owners - The Jay family - always maintained it would be back.
    Now, the wait for this comeback seems to be almost over as a licensing application has been lodged with Great Yarmouth Borough Council for the multiplex - under the name of Royalty Cinema.

    LLANELLI: The big projects which are hoped to give Llanelli a brighter future
    During its heyday, Llanelli’s Odeon Cinema (later known as Theatre Elli) was the beating heart of the community.
    The 1938 art-deco building was a staple of the town and the era, providing residents with theatre productions and cinema screenings until 2011.
    However, impressive plans aiming to restore the theatre to its former majesty are due to be completed this year.
    [Note - this is about half-way down the page]

    MANCHESTER: A new indoor arena AND a multiplex cinema could be built next to the Etihad
    Plans for a new 20,000-capacity indoor arena next to the Etihad have been enshrined in the council’s new draft vision for the area - as well as potentially a multiplex cinema.

    PORT TALBOT: How (the) old Plaza Cinema will be transformed for the town
    Port Talbot 's Plaza Cinema looks set to get a new lease of life as plans for its future have been unveiled.
    The building in Talbot Street was built in 1939 and opened the following year but has been vacant for the last 20 years.
    It is noted in a planning statement that "the roof has partially collapsed and there is significant internal water damage as a result".
    See also: The eerie, decaying interior of the old Plaza cinema

    PLYMOUTH: Urban Splash makes £18m profit and confirms Civic Centre plans
    Regeneration specialist Urban Splash has seen its profits almost triple in a year and is ploughing ahead with a major development at Plymouth’s Royal William Yard – and is going ahead with plans for the Civic Centre.
    In March 2019, Urban Splash submitted plans to create a cinema, run by trendy boutique chain Everyman, in the Melville building at RWY.

    STOKE-ON-TRENT: Then & Now: Remembering The Gordon Theatre
    Long before it was filled with shops and restaurants overlooking a car park, Kingsway Road was home to The Gordon Theatre.
    The venue, which opened at the beginning of the 20th century, was named after the iconic General Gordon of Khartoum, who had passed away in 1885.
    The theatre building was later transformed into the Hippodrome cinema before eventually becoming the Gaumont

    WAKEFIELD: ABC Cinema: A Wetherspoons, cocktail bar, homeless shelter and something for the kids - you have your say on what should happen to the building
    With the news that a plan to demolish the derelict ABC cinema on Kirkgate to make way for a car park has been withdrawn, readers have been making their suggestions on what should happen to the site.

    OVERSEAS NEWS

    AUSTRALIA - MELBOURNE: RMIT launches Capitol cinema again to wonder and relief
    More pictures and a video about the item in CTA E-NEWS 647

    COULD IT HAPPEN HERE?: Latvian pig farm finds new life as movie theater
    A former pig farm has been converted into a cinema and museum in the Vecpiebalga municipality, bearing the name “Film Farm”. Its founders are a couple, Aina and Aldis Slišanis.

    And finally...
    Just when you thought you had the space for a home cinema? Perhaps think again...
    Tech behemoth Samsung announced its plans to introduce a home version of The Wall, named The Wall Luxury.
    Starting at only 73-inches and 1080p, the MicroLED tech allows the TV to be customized at any size, scaling up to 292-inches and 8K.
    This size goes over 24ft in the diagonal.
    The Wall Luxury will be available globally this July, however, the tech giant didn’t detail the pricing!

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