Cash boost for indie cinemas in Hailsham, Rye and Burgess Hill

Sussex independent cinemas in Hailsham, Rye and Burgess Hill are to receive a cash boost from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Friday, 2nd October 2020, 11:01 am
Updated Friday, 2nd October 2020, 11:04 am
Hailsham Pavilion
Hailsham Pavilion

They are to receive a share of £650,000 in first awards from the Cultural Recovery Fund for Independent Cinemas.

The Hailsham Pavilion, Hailsham, East Sussex will receive £5,760; Kino, Rye, East Sussex £8,469; and Orion Cinema, Burgess Hill, West Sussex £5,254.

The investment is part of the government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund and will help cinemas from Northumberland down to Devon through the pandemic, the department says.

The UK Government’s Film and TV Production Restart Scheme is now open for applications.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “We all enjoyed the escapism of a good film during lockdown, but nothing beats the experience of the big screen. This first wave of emergency funding will help dozens of independent cinemas around the country, preserving their unique character and history for future generations.

“Our Film and TV Restart Scheme will keep cameras rolling on British-made film and TV – protecting jobs, boosting this hugely important industry and giving us more great content to enjoy.

"But now we need the public to pay their part too. So I urge everyone to get booking your seats and support your local cinema.

“This important cash boost of more than £650,000 will help independent cinemas – the cultural organisation closest to home for so many people – weather the storm of the coronavirus pandemic.”

The support for independent cinemas has been welcomed by Luther co-stars Idris Elba and Ruth Wilson.

Idris Elba, award-winning actor, producer and director (Mandela, The Long Walk to Freedom, Yardie, Luther) and BFI Governor said: “In a time with so much change and uncertainty around us, there is comfort in the familiarity of a comfy pair of seats and some popcorn at your local cinema. It's a simple and effective way of bonding with our cities and culture. We depend on the independent cinema and they depend on us to support them, now more than ever."

Ruth Wilson, actor and producer (Saving Mr Banks, His Dark Materials, Mrs. Wilson),

said: “What lockdown has made very clear is how vital local communities are. I am thrilled independent cinemas will be able to access the Culture Recovery Fund. They, alongside all local arts organisations are lifelines for their communities and for the people that work in them. It was in my local cinema in Walton-on-Thames where I saw films for the first time that moved me, that made me understand the power of storytelling, the power of communal watching and made me want to be part of that world.”

Cinemas are able to apply for Safety Grants, to help independent venues meet the additional costs of creating a safe and COVID-secure environment for staff and audiences, and Business Sustainability grants of up to £200,000 to help stabilise venues as they reopen.

The £30 million fund will remain open for applications until October 30 and support for cinemas making an application is available from the BFI.

To support the UK’s film industry the government has also opened the application process for the Film and TV Production Restart Scheme to help productions get the cameras rolling.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak, said: “The UK’s cinemas and film & TV production industry are a key part of our culture - they provide thousands of jobs and help to entertain the nation. So I’m delighted that we can support independent cinemas through the Cultural Recovery Fund, and help to get productions up and running again through the Film and TV Production Restart Scheme, protecting vital jobs across the industry.”

The £500 million Scheme is designed to help TV and film productions across the country that have been halted or delayed by a lack of insurance to get back up and running. The Scheme will give productions the confidence they need that they will be supported if future losses are incurred due to Covid-19.

Detailed eligibility criteria for the scheme are available online so that productions can prepare applications ahead of the scheme formally opening in the coming weeks.

Applications to the Culture Recovery Fund for Independent Cinema are open until 30 October.

Applications to the Film and TV Production Restart Scheme can be made from 9am on Friday 2 October.

Cinemas are allowed to reopen in England so long as they follow the COVID-19 secure UK Cinema Association guidelines. They are exempt from the 10pm curfew if a performance starts before 10pm, however no alcohol or food can be served after 10pm. Cinemas are able to continue to host more than 6 people in total but no one should mix in a group of greater than 6.

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