New hope for historic cinema's redevelopment plans

CLEVEDON S historic cinema is appointing a new project manager to drive its restoration scheme forward.

CLEVEDON'S historic cinema is appointing a new project manager to drive its restoration scheme forward.

Curzon Community Cinema, in Old Church Road, is in desperate need of repairs, especially to the roof as rain water has been leaking through the broken tiles and into the grand circle.

Theatre bosses are now looking to hire a new member of staff who will draw up a funding bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to secure cash for the work.

Curzon chair of trustees, Chris Brain, said: "The roof is really critical at the moment. We've got buckets all over the place to catch the water when it rains. Luckily it doesn't leak into the areas where the public are.

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"The tiles are all cracked and broken and the concern is that we may have to wait until 2009 to move forward with the work. We might have to do some temporary work before."

Bosses at the Curzon had initially set aside £5.2million for redevelopment of the theatre and had planned to add a second screen, restore the cafe and update the foyer.

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However, the plans have now changed after Heritage Lottery Fund officials said that they were unlikely to be awarded cash for the large project and staff are now concentrating on smaller bids to improve the popular venue.

Mr Brain said: "The Heritage Lottery Fund has changed its rules, making it easier for smaller charities like the cinema to bid for money, so hopefully we will be successful.

"We do hope to do more work in the future but we're going to focus on one thing at a time."

The new project leader is due to be appointed in the next couple of months and the bid will be submitted to the lottery in April.

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