FILM fans should soon have the choice of more big screen favourites at the Bognor Regis cinema.
Picturedrome operator Adam Cunard has formally applied for permission to create a third screen at the historic venue.
He has asked Arun District Council for listed building consent to form the new auditorium in the octagon room in the cinema’s tower.
If he gets the go-ahead, he expects work to start in September. The 38-seat screen should open in October.
He will spend some £50,000 on the expansion through the Picturedrome Electric Theatre Company of which he is the managing director.
He said: “The seats will be the same as those in the existing screens.
“The auditorium will have modern stepping, which means each screen will have a decent view.
“Having the third screen will give me a lot more flexibility in the number of films I can show and the length of time I can continue to hold them.”
He also envisages hiring out the room for private screenings for at functions like parties for £50-60 a night.
The proposed new screen will have the latest digital projection and Dolby sound system.
It will be the biggest change to the Picturedrome, on Canada Grove, since the second screen was added in 1986.
Meanwhile, the cinema’s owner –Bognor Regis Town Council – is on course to add a fourth screen.
Cllr Roger Nash told Monday’s (July 1) meeting of the council’s policy and resources committee, formal tender documents for the work would soon be sent out to builders. Consultants had been hired to provide expert advice as the plan progressed.
He said the likely cost would be £700-800,000. “Our position as owners of the building is to protect council tax payers’ cash,” he said.
“We want to make sure the Picturedrome is in the best possible position to compete successfully if a new multiplex is built, and it is a big if, as part of the regeneration plans.
“That is unlikely to happen with the present two screens. But it is much more likely with four screens.” The proposal reflects the view of the electors’ meeting last March.