We have written before about the vacant old library in a prime location on Acton High Street.
The current plans from Acton Arts Project show a 2 screen cinema (planned to be managed by the Arthouse Crouch End team) with a café and a flexible performance area. The upper floors (planned to be managed by ACAVA) would provide flexible space for a variety of artistic projects.
The original aim of the council was to sell the building with a long lease - but this has now changed and the council plans to rent it out for, initially, 25 years.
This new approach by the council means that the funds required are very different. Instead of having to find a large sum to buy the building, probably resulting in the upper floors being converted to flats to fund it, it now needs direct funding to perform the work.
This will be less money overall but makes it less likely that a developer will step in to help out.
So - the plan now is to raise initial funds through crowfunding.
This crowdfunding project aims to fund the initial feasibility/design stage of the wider project to install the cinema.
You can pledge your support at https://www.spacehive.com/a-cinema-for-acton
What they want to deliver:
- The crowd will be funding the infrastructure of the campaign - without which there will be no cinema
- Funding planning permissions and preparations for the re-purposing of the building
- Make a compelling destination that attracts people from outside the borough
- Give a vital spark to the regeneration of the High Street and the night time economy
- Ultimately provide a much-wanted local cinema offering a programme with a wide appeal
Why it's a great idea:
The Acton Arts Project has grown out of local concern for the fate of the old library on Acton High Street in the heart of Acton and there is a great deal of community support for the proposed cinema.
Acton is an area of West London, with a population of 62,480 recorded in the census of 2011. A population which has evidently increased substantially in the intervening years with a considerable amount of local residential development. The project is a great idea because it will enhance the infrastructure for the residents.
The social purpose is to benefit the area’s residents and visitors by providing a vibrant space in the heart of the High Street. This project will boost the local economy by offering employment/training opportunities, and will promote community cohesion by providing a welcoming set for residents - night and day.
In the event that Acton Arts Project are not successful in obtaining use of the building, then this crowdfunding campaign will be closed and no pledges will be collected.