Decision made on Bury St Edmunds Cineworld expansion plans – but will it go ahead?
- Credit: CHAPMAN TAYLOR
Plans to expand the Cineworld in Bury St Edmunds have been approved – but the coronavirus pandemic has cast doubt on when that project may go ahead, if at all.
The cinema chain submitted plans back in January to extend its Parkway facility that would include two additional screens, as well as a new lobby, cafe and lounge.
But it had warned last month that a loss of income from the government-enforced coronavirus lockdown could put a strain on its finances.
MORE: Cineworld warns of financial pressures from COVID-19West Suffolk Council’s head of planning approved the Bury expansion application last week, but Cineworld said it was not in a position to offer any updates on the project.
A spokesman from the company said: “At this moment in time, Cineworld is unable to share any updates in regards to Cineworld Bury St Edmunds.
“When we have news to share we will be in touch.”
It is not yet clear if the financial impact of coronavirus will mean expansion and development projects will have to be put on hold.
News of the application at the beginning of the year had been met with a positive response by business leaders, who described it as a vote of confidence in the town.
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It is understood it is also due to create approximately 10 new jobs.
In its application, Cineworld said: “The current proposal provides an opportunity to significantly refurbish the interior with a holistic approach and to enhance the screen provision from eight to 10 screens.
“The refurbishment of the screen rooms will allow a higher quality experience including for those with mobility impairments, providing better access to the auditoria, and will meet the demands of a contemporary cinema offer.”
There were no objections to the proposals.
MORE: Cineworld Bury plans a vote of confidence for town, say business leadersWest Suffolk Council’s development committee is not able to meet because of social distancing actions enforced by central government, but senior planning officers have delegated authority to decide on applications.
Assistant director for planning at the council, David Collinson, signed off approval for the scheme on April 1.