A long-standing marquee outside a Suffolk cinema that houses a bar and dining area could be replaced by a more permanent structure.

Riverside Theatre in Woodbridge has applied to East Suffolk Council for permission to replace the existing restaurant marquee with a new bar and restaurant structure.

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The existing marquee has been a familiar sight to visitors to the riverside as it fronts on to Quayside.

The temporary structure was erected three years ago during the Covid pandemic and provides an extension to the restaurant run by Woodbridge business A-Listers, but now the plan is to replace the marquee with a 'modern, conservatory-style' facility.

The cinema's manager Neil McGlone said the new covered area would "extend the restaurant out," but that at the moment the plans were at an early "tentative" stage.

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Last week, A-Listers announced plans to open a new bar at Ipswich Waterfront on June 16, which will occupy the Tented Building that is currently home to Aurora Bars and Restaurants in Helena Road.

However, Mr McGlone said A-Listers would continue to operate its business at the Woodbridge cinema.

He added the reason why the plans had been submitted was that temporary marquees had been allowed by the council during the pandemic, but prior to that were forbidden.

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He said that the concern was that the council would return to pre-COVID rules and therefore a permanent structure was needed.

"It is incredibly early stages. The plan was obviously that the marquee would not be there forever and we would like to put something in place that would be a more permanent fixture there," Mr McGlone added.

A-Listers moved on to the cinema site in July 2020 and Mr McGlone said the plans may not come to fuition for another 'three or four years'.

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