Town’s last surviving cinema is back in business

Films: Volunteers of the New Picture House which has re-opened after moving to a new site
Films: Volunteers of the New Picture House which has re-opened after moving to a new site

Dewsbury’s last surviving cinema is back in business and bringing new life to a quiet corner of the town.

The volunteer run New Picture House held its first screenings in its newly opened home on the second floor premises on Church Street last week.

And to get back into the groove it ran a mini film festival from Thursday to Sunday, with more than 60 visitors attending screenings including Jungle Book and Rams.

Chantelle Stewart of New Picture House said: “It went fantastic, we were over capacity and had to bring in extra seats.

“People are really excited about it and the feedback we have been getting has been great.

“There used to be something like five cinemas in Dewsbury and now they are all gone, and that makes something like this all the more important to the area.

“It brings activity to that corner of Dewsbury, a really great and positive chance to bring life to a dead space.”

Volunteers painted, decorated and furnished the space above Heron Foods after moving from Yorkshire House on South Street in September.

The volunteers also run evenings where food and drink is available along with activities for children.

Mrs Stewart said: “It is family oriented but we do welcome all ages here.

“We get whole evenings planned beforehand, with food, drink and a chance to relax during the interval of the film.

“It can be a really nice thing for people to just take a break and talk.”

The New Picture House group has been operating for around five years.

It is run entirely by volunteers who used to meet up to watch and talk about movies at each other’s homes.

Kirklees Council provided an initial grant of £1,000 for the group through its Arts in the Neighbourhood Scheme.

Dewsbury Area Committee also helped the group to establish themselves.

Screenings will continue with a showing of Daniel Blake on Sunday, February, 12 and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them on Sunday February, 25.

To find out more about events and the latest screenings visit www.newpicturehouse.com