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Campaigners hoping to restore Lichfield’s Regal Cinema to its former glory have revealed that it could take up to £3million to achieve their aims.
But despite the size of the task the group still remain determined to explore the opportunity to redevelop the site.
The meeting was told that the company which had planned to transform the building into a hotel had pulled out of a deal and that the owners would not object to it being used as an arts centre of film venue.
The organisers of the group admitted that any transformation would be a long term scheme.
“This is a massive project,” a spokesperson admitted. “If the funding was there, the building could be converted potentially in 12 months.
“However, this will realistically be longer given financial restrictions.”
The group say they are now looking into funding sources as well as identify figures and partnerships who could advise on any restoration work.
They are also working towards a smaller initial fundraising target to help them put together a plan, feasibility study and initial publicity for their cause.
“We need to communicate the idea that this project is not just about having a cinema in Lichfield,” a spokesperson added. “It is about having a venue for community film and arts for the whole community.
“The project also has the potential to re-invigorate the city centre and bring in tourism.
“The Regal would be a big attraction, bringing in new visitors to this historic building which would serve as a real arts hub in the city centre.
“The project is about using a building from Lichfield’s heritage for the purpose for which it was intended rather than letting it lie derelict, dragging down the reputation and image of that area of the centre.
“Imagine how that area would be revitalised by a restored Regal Arts Complex.”
For more information visit the Restore the Regal Cinema Facebook group.