At the Campaign’s AGM in September, supporters raised a number of points. Here are our answers to them.
We have reviewed the scope for live screenings. It would not be practicable to show relays from the Royal Opera House or the National Theatre since we would have to commit ourselves to showing a sequence of transmissions at various times and we cannot do this. Nor do we currently have the equipment needed to receive these transmissions. There is more scope for showing productions from The Globe Theatre – recorded, not live. We propose as an experiment to show ‘Twelfth Night’ in the spring and if this is successful, ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ later in the year. There would be a premium price of £12 (£10 concessions) for these performances.
Scope for themed seasons of films – by Director or genre – possibly James Bond
We already mark special occasions of various kinds such as Black History Month, LGBT History Month, International Women’s Day and Holocaust Memorial Day. The scope for a themed season is limited when we are showing just two or three films a week. If and when we are able to show more films, we will bear this in mind.
Discounts for NHS and Council staff
We already give discounts for students, over-60s, claimants and people with disabilities. It would be hard to widen the scope further.
We will continue to consider the scope for showing one film on say a Tuesday and a linked film on the following Thursday.
Sales – afternoon and evening
Depending on the films, there can be a significant difference between the audiences for afternoon and evening screenings. Most seats sold at afternoon screenings are concessionary. We reflect this in planning our programme – whilst at the same time seeking to increase our appeal to young people.
Timing of evening performances
It is difficult to start screenings much later as we have to be out of the Clocktower by 10.00pm.
Relations with the Council
At officer level, relations are good. Staff are ready to do what they can to enable the Campaign to succeed, and generally the Council seem to value what we are doing. We were grateful too for the relatively low rent charged for the hire of the Cinema. On the other hand it would help to have a more formal agreement with the Council – at present we could be given three months’ notice to quit. We will continue to explore the scope for developing relationships.
Attracting more young people
The numbers of children attending family-orientated films at the Cinema has increased and we are keen to attract more. Supporters might encourage their children and grandchildren to attend. It is also worth noting that the Cinema is being increasingly used by other bodies and these include young artists in training.