Major cinema bid for Peterhead

The Gala Bingo which closed its doors in January last year could be given a new lease of life as a cinema
The Gala Bingo which closed its doors in January last year could be given a new lease of life as a cinema

Look out the sweeties, get the popcorn ready - Peterhead town centre could soon play host to a state-of-the-art five-screen cinema.

Irish-based firm Melcorpo Commercial Properties Limited is seeking a building warrant for £600,000 worth of internal works to reconfigure the layout of the former Gala Bingo in Drummers Corner.

The Gala Bingo club closed its doors for the final time in January last year with the loss of some 13 jobs.

If supported by Aberdeenshire Council, the proposals will pave the way for the full refurbishment of the Marischal Street premises by specialist firm NBDA Ltd whose clients include Odeon and Cineworld.

The initial works would see the building stripped out internally to create space for five screens, toilets, staff areas and a foyer.

It would answer the prayers of thousands of local folk who have been demanding just such a facility for countless years to remove the need to travel into Aberdeen to watch the latest movies.

Peterhead Community Theatre has very successfully been screening two films monthly since 2012 thanks to a dedicated crew of around 24 volunteers. They were recently honoured by the council’s Buchan Area Committee which presented a Pride of Buchan Award in recognition of their efforts to the bring the latest blockbusters to the Blue Toon.

The group’s increasing use of social media and online booking facilities, together with affordable rates, has been encouraging more users of all ages to enjoy a host of great movies very close after their general release.

Commenting on the potential arrival of the multi-screen cinema to the heart of Peterhead, Rediscover Peterhead’s Leslie Forsyth welcomed the opportunities the new attraction would bring to the town centre.

He said: “Any business new to the town would be made very welcome and can only be beneficial. We would provide as much support as we could for any proposal should it come to fruition.”

The Marischal Street facility started out in life as the Regal Cinema which opened in 1939.