New owners for Burnley cinema

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BURNLEY’s cinema has gone back to being small and friendly after its international owner was ordered to sell after being accused by the Office of Fair Trading of having a monopoly.

The cinema at Hollywood Park, Manchester Road, was acquired by Vue Entertainment when it bought Apollo UK last May, but at the end of January the OFT ordered it to sell the cinema because it also owned other nearby cinemas, at Blackburn and the newly opened Bury.

Hollywood Park has now been bought by Reel Cinemas Ltd, an independent family concern which now has a portfolio of 16 cinemas nationwide.

This week cinema manager Andrew Smith and his team have been adapting to the changes and installing new projectors. The cinema will still be able to show 3D and have live feeds, such as the production from the Royal Opera House on Wednesday which features Burnley opera singer Kathleen Wilkinson.

“I think customers will like the new arrangements,” said Mr Smith. “We will still have all the latest releases but the timings are more in line with how we used to run things 10 years ago. There are no films later than 9pm because the owners say people using the buses need to be able to get home. We’ve also got the leaflet back, so, just like the old days, people can pop in whenever they want and pick up a list to see the what’s on and the times the films are show.”