SOME 1,800 people have already signed a petition to protect the Picturedrome cinema in Bognor Regis.
The supporters put down their names in the first week of the petition being launched by the town’s civic society.
But the group is urging more backers to come forward to ensure the voices in support of the two-screen venue cannot be ignored.
Hugh Coster, the society’s deputy chairman, said: “We want as many residents of Bognor as possible to sign the petition.
“That’s why we have not specified a closing date for it.
“We want to see how many names we can get in a reasonable period of time.”
The petition urges Arun District Council to help to safeguard the Picturedrome by using its status as a landowner or landlord to refuse permission for any competing cinema to be built on land it owns or controls around Bognor while the current cinema is open.
It has been started in response to the latest thoughts from Arun’s preferred developer, St Modwen, for a miniplex cinema as part of the regeneration of the Regis Centre site.
Arun has to debate the petition once it has reached 1,500 names of the district’s residents.
But the civic society wants to gather as many signatures as possible in a show of strength of support for the Picturedrome.
The petition can be signed at the Picturedrome in Canada Grove as well as shops around the town. They include Print-In, High Street; Bon Bon, Glamis Street; Unique Promotions, The Arcade; Heaps of PCs, London Road; The Codfather, London Road; Linden Fisheries, Linden Road; and Youngs 99p Shop, Station Road.
It can also be signed by picking up a copy of this week’s Bognor Regis Observer (Thursday, February 23 edition) out now.