Share your ideas for restoration of Pontefract’s Crescent Cinema

Jonathan Griffiths, Treasurer for the Crescent Group,  John Tollick who kick-started the debate about the Crescent and Karl Gilbert, Secretary, Pontefract Civic Society outside The Crescent Cinema.

Jonathan Griffiths, Treasurer for the Crescent Group, John Tollick who kick-started the debate about the Crescent and Karl Gilbert, Secretary, Pontefract Civic Society outside The Crescent Cinema.

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Community leaders hoping to restore Pontefract’s former Crescent Cinema have launched a website for people to submit their ideas.

Pontefract Civic Society is looking for ideas from people living in the town on the future use of the Ropergate building.

The cinema has not been used since it closed in 1993 but the group wants to restore it with money from grants.

Martin Lodge, vice chairman of the civic society, said: “All of this campaign started by a post on the internet asking what people want to do with it and it really took off. We had a great response so we contacted the owners to see if we could arrange a visit.

“It was literally like someone shut the door 22 years ago and no-one has been in since which is a shame.

“The Crescent is one of the first buildings people see when they come into Pontefract and first impressions count for a lot.”

The group said it also hopes to open up the facility to theatre groups in the town as part of its plans.

Mr Lodge said: “The idea is to show old films and try and create something which can be a resource for the town.

“Pontefract lacks performance space and places where groups can rehearse so that would be another benefit to getting the building revamped.”

The group has held two meetings about its plans but is now looking to hear from more people in the town.

Mr Lodge said: “This wonderful building is going to rack and ruin and we want to restore it to its former position in the town.

“It is not about making it something to compete with other venues. There is a great need for it and if delivered in the right way it could be a great success.”

The Crescent Cinema opened on November 2, 1926 and within the complex was the 1,190 seat cinema which had a fully equipped stage with associated dressing rooms, a cafe and a substantial dance hall.

Mr Lodge said: “We want people in Pontefract to be involved with the plans and would like to hear their ideas.

For more information or to submit your ideas visit www.the-crescent.org.uk