Cinema is given the green light

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Plans for a new permanent cinema on Arran have been given the planning go ahead.

Arran Picture House Ltd wants to convert the former ferry terminal in Brodick into a two-screen community cinema, which it initially hoped to open by Easter.

It is the brainchild of Brian Keating, who already runs The Tower Digital Arts Centre in a converted church in Helensburgh, known as the Clock Tower.

The proposed cinema, which will house two 66-seat screen rooms, was approved with only two conditions: that the 14 parking spaces for patrons are created prior to the cinema being put to use and that a proposed bin store is also created.

The building, which was vacated by Caledonian MacBrayne in 2017 and is being leased to the new owners, will see a minimal amount of change externally, with just a small bin store being created and two fire escape doors being installed.

Internally, changes will see the two cinemas being created in each of the west and south wings of the building, with the box office, concession booth and toilets in the central hall. Access doors would remain to the north-east and south-west corners, as before.

Three objections to the creation of the cinema were received, with the main complaint of insufficient parking being negated by the applicant who confirmed that a further four spaces would be allocated to bring the total to 14, and in line with roads development guidance of one parking space per 10 cinema seats.

A further objection, which voiced concerns that the creation of a cinema would damage the operation of the visiting Screen Machine mobile cinema, was not included in the consideration as it is deemed a commercial issue and does not form part of material planning consideration.

While the Arran Community Council did not object to the application, it did note that parking and congestion during ferry times may be problematic although North Ayrshire Council Active Travel and Transport felt that sufficient parking was available and provided no objection.