Cinema plans hit stumbling block

A PROPOSAL to bring a long-awaited multiscreen cinema to the centre of a historic market town look to have hit a further stumbling block.Developers working on the entertainment complex earmarked for the Parkway, in Bury St Edmunds, have so far failed to meet conditions included within its planning permission, granted in December.

A PROPOSAL to bring a long-awaited multiscreen cinema to the centre of a historic market town look to have hit a further stumbling block.

Developers working on the entertainment complex earmarked for the Parkway, in Bury St Edmunds, have so far failed to meet conditions included within its planning permission, granted in December.

The news could mean building work on the project, which was due to begin in May, may now be pushed back until St Edmundsbury Borough Council has agreed upon design features with Cine-UK.

It could be the latest in a long line of set-backs in the bid to bring the eight-screen cinema complex to the town.


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Planning permission for the cinema, along with food outlets, was granted in December 1998, but angry campaigners, whose homes were overlooked by the proposed building, then forced a judicial review. Although they eventually lost their case, the delay saw developers Simons Estates pull out of the project in 2002.

And although cinema-goers were hopeful the permission granted last December would finally bring the complex to Bury, a spokesman for the council yesterday confirmed Cine-UK could not start work until conditions had been agreed.

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“In the conditions included within the planning consent, some design features still needed to be agreed,” she said. “We have not heard anything from the developers, and they cannot start work until this is agreed. We are still no further forward.”

No one from Cine-UK was available for comment yesterday.

Meanwhile, applications giving details of the plans for on the town's derelict Cattle Market site are expected by the end of this month.

The ambitious redevelopment project will see a new Debenham's department store brought to Bury, along with a venue for public entertainments.

Steve Bryson, of Halogen, which is working with developers Centros Miller on the scheme, said an extensive consultation period would take place once the plans were lodged.

“I am working on a major consultation plan to go out to the public and at the moment, everything is on track,” he said.

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