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Silver screen returns in four-date trial run

PUBLISHED: 11:05 27 November 2008 | UPDATED: 10:18 23 August 2010

BIG screen cinema is coming to the town for the first time in five years as part of a four-date trial set up by the council. The Reporter can exclusively reveal that Gravesham Borough Council has plans in place to bring a cinema screen to the Woodville H

BIG screen cinema is coming to the town for the first time in five years as part of a four-date trial set up by the council.

The Reporter can exclusively reveal that Gravesham Borough Council has plans in place to bring a cinema screen to the Woodville Halls.

The initiative, called 'Monday Night at the Movies', will kick-off on January 26 with further screenings scheduled for February 23, March 23 and April 27.

If the trial screenings are well attended the council says it will consider buying projection equipment of its own to make the cinema a permanent fixture.

The cinema will show a range of films including recently released blockbusters at a price of £6 for adults and £4 for the under 14s.

Deputy council leader and cabinet member for leisure David Turner said: "We all know that the demise of the movie theatre left a big hole in the leisure facilities of the town. The council has been investigating the possibility of putting cinema into the Woodville Halls for several months and I am certain that a trial along these lines is the best way - and the most cost-effective - to test public reaction."

The news of the plan comes five years after the town's only big screen, the EMD cinema in King Street, was closed for business following a steady decline in customers.

The Reporter launched a campaign to reopen the cinema in October 2005 and Kieron Butler, of St Georges Crescent, Gravesend, collected more than 5,000 signatures in a campaign of his own.

But all hope of a big screen being reinstated in the town faded in January 2006 when the building was burnt down by arsonists.

Mr Butler said: "It's brilliant. If this goes ahead then it will be a really good thing.

"It will save going all the way to Bluewater, it costs so much money to get there and now that there's a recession on no one can afford it."

jason.goodyer@archant.co.uk

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