Lewisham film-lovers no will no longer have to leave the borough to see their favourite Hollywood stars come autumn as a group of residents have joined forces to create a Deptford cinema.
Until now, Lewisham was one of only two London boroughs without a cinema forcing film-buffs to travel as far as Greenwich, Southwark or even central London.
But with the help of a group of residents, film-makers and cinema enthusiasts all that is about to change.
“We wanted to create something that would have a real value for the local community. We'll concentrate on art and arthouse film – think of the more interesting films you might see at a larger cinema – as those films are fantastic and often harder for people to see. But we'll show something for everyone, from Hollywood, to the most high-quality experimental film seen anywhere in the city. It's one thing to watch a DVD at home, but cinema is a collective experience and can be life-changing. It's an injustice that people in the place we live are denied that,” said Edwin Mingard, one of the helpers.
The building, located on Deptford Broadway, will have approximately 50 seats and a large screen which will show the latest high-quality digital projection as well as 16mm film.
“Whilst we're a cinema, we want to be able to host other art forms too,” said Janine Prevost, another member of the group. “We want to have musicians play live scores to films, to have theatre performances on the stage, and to be a hub where people involved in different art forms know they can meet up or put on events.”
The group are counting on local support to get the cinema running by late autumn.
Resident Tyler Dunn, who has been helping with the project, said: “If you have time on your hands and you want to learn a new skill, come to a meeting, see how you can get involved. And then who knows? When things are up and running in a few months time and someone says 'Hey, I heard there's a great new cinema in Deptford' you'll be able to say 'Yeah, I helped build that'.”