PLANS for a community cinema in Dunfermline are on the table thanks to our Press, Take, Action! campaign.

More than 1,000 fed-up film fans have signed our petition calling on Odeon bosses to cut ticket prices at their West Fife cinema, the dearest venue in Scotland.

The success of the campaign has captured the imagination of a group of volunteers who have now created the Dunfermline Cinema Project.

“The response to the Press campaign was massive and it showed that there’s a real demand for an alternative to paying the prices at the Odeon and going to a community cinema instead,” said Graeme Spence, one of the group’s volunteers.

The project is aiming to crowdfund £40,000 to be able to find a suitable venue in Dunfermline town centre and create a community cinema that is “for everyone”.

A 10-phase plan is now under way as they look to make the dream become a reality.

Graeme continued: “Myself and a few others spoke about a community cinema a few years ago but the Dunfermline Press campaign really brought the issue to the forefront once again.

“From the market research we’ve conducted, people told us that the prices at the Odeon are too expensive and they wanted a better experience when going to see a film.

“We’ve found that affordability is the main issue. Everyone is squeezed tighter these days, and people quite rightly want better value for their money.

“For a community cinema to thrive and be successful, everyone’s voice needs to be heard. This is the time to get in touch with us and tell us what you want.”

An initial £25,000 is required for the project to firstly secure a venue and begin turning the building into the cinema space.

Once the final £40,000 target is reached, a certified cinema projector will be installed as well as a screen and sound system.

After comfortable seating and facilities for food and drink are fitted, the venue will then launch to the public.

Graeme said: “Our goal is to be able to deliver the latest films on the night of their release; we want to have films during their first run. That’s what everyone wants.

“In order to do that, we’ll need to build an audience first and that would involve showing films on their second-run as well as themed evenings and other events.”

The quicker the money is raised, the quicker the team of volunteers will be able to source a venue.

“We need to find the right place,” Graeme added.

“We’re hopeful the crowdfunding goes well and depending on whether it’s slow or fast, that will determine how soon we can really get going and bring this to the town.

“We’re keen on hearing from anyone who can help us.

“When you’re out in Dunfermline at night, there’s a lot of pubs that are buzzing with people and I think a cinema would be a really good fit.”

Following the initial first phase of market research and the second step of creating an online presence, the group will now set up street stalls and begin receiving donations in the coming weeks as part of phase three.

The plans have been backed by Dunfermline and West Fife MP Douglas Chapman, who threw his weight behind our campaign when we launched it in February.

He said: “There’s a real appetite amongst the public to see a community cinema get off the ground.

“Some exciting plans have been put to me and I will be supporting the idea to see how far it can be taken. Whatever the outcome, and I am hoping that it’s hugely successful, it really does require community backing.

"Between the actions of the newly-formed Dunfermline Regeneration Trust and the Dunfermline Cinema Project, there is certainly a lot of energy being put into getting a community cinema off the ground. It really has captured the imagination, especially if it could be delivered at a fair and affordable price.”

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