PLANS to transform the ruins of Ealing Cinema into a state-of-the-art picture house have been unveiled by developers who hope to include an outdoor arts space, restaurants and homes.
Land Securities wants to create a complex called Ealing Filmworks by knocking down Flavas’s Bar and Grill in Mattock Lane, as well as the YMCA charity shop and Walpole House, both in Bond Street.
It will create a large pedestrian area connecting Mattock Lane and Bond Street with Ealing Broadway with an amphitheatre, outdoor screen and possibly a gallery in the middle.
The scheme has cheered those who have been calling for more cultural venues for years.
John Hummerston, chairman of both Ealing Arts and Leisure and the Campaign for an Ealing performance and arts centre, said: “Arts and cultural facilities are very much lacking in the borough. This looks like it could be just what’s needed for the centre of Ealing.”
The facade of the old cinema will be restored as will the original Walpole Picture House archway currently languishing in the car park next to Flava’s. Developers hope to use the arch as an entrance in Bond Street or Mattock Lane.
About 150 flats would be built above the cinema, new restaurants, bars and cafes. It is thought the complex will provide 350 new jobs.
Nick Davis, development director at Land Securities, said: “We see this as an opportunity to do something very special in Ealing. Subject to planning consent, we would bring a multiplex cinema back to Ealing Broadway and create a film quarter that will offer visitors a one-of-a-kind experience.”
The current cinema in Ealing Broadway has been derelict since 2008 when work to develop the site by Empire Cinemas ground to a halt.
Land Securities hopes to open the new complex in 2017 but this is dependent on planning permission and the outcome of Ealing Council’s compulsory purchase of the site from Empire.
Council leader Julian Bell, said: "After waiting more than four years, I am delighted we are finally seeing progress. I urge residents to come forward and give us their views on these designs."
A public exhibition of the plans will be held in Ealing Broadway shopping centre from 2pm to 7pm on June 28 and 10am to 3pm the following day. Call Ealing Filmworks on 020 7323 3544 or email email@example.com for more information.