Melton cinema prepares to reopen safely
Excited film fans are gearing up to return to The Regal Cinema, in Melton, which is due to reopen next week just over six months after it was forced to close due to coronavirus restrictions.
The first film at the iconic art deco-style King Street picture house, on Friday September 25, will be the Christopher Nolan action thriller, Tenet, starring Robert Pattinson and John David Washington.
Social distancing measures will be in place to protect the safety of customers and staff and masks will be worn by everyone in the building.
Manager Jacob Mundin said they were concerned at times during lockdown that the cinema may never reopen because of the loss of revenue and the challenges of the pandemic.
He told the Melton Times: “It’s been difficult - there were points when we were very worried.
“But many people have helped us by renewing their memberships even when they hadn’t yet elapsed, we’ve had funding support from the government and from the British Film Institute.
“Lots of people in town have been asking us when we will start showing films again and it’s really good to see the support we have.”
Brochures are being delivered to members this week to enable to them make advanced bookings for films and online ticketing for customers will go live on Friday.
The building will be given a thorough clean between showings and everything is being done to limit further spread of Covid-19.
Jacob said: “We normally have 110 people seated for films and we could go up to 65 but we are going to restrict numbers to below that.
“People can just come in and not need to worry about their safety.
“We will have 45 minutes between films to keep audiences separate, there will be dividers between seats and our cakes will be pre-packaged and wrapped.
“Customers will need to wear masks when they come through the foyer and when they are sitting watching the film, although they can remove their mask if they have a snack or a drink.
“It is annoying we can’t open to capacity but we have to follow government guidelines.”
There are fewer films coming out at present due to delays caused by coronavirus but The Regal will initially be showing movies which were originally intended to be shown from March and through the summer.
Jacob added: “There is a massive backlog of films and we will be able to show them for longer due to the reduced capacity.
“We have some great movies later in the year to look forward to, like the new James Bond, Wonder Woman and Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story film.
“Hopefully we will soon be able to show our films to bigger audiences.”