Thursday, May 14, 2009

Save old Hither Green Cinema

Schools, swimming pools, social clubs, ballrooms, glue factories and now...

From This is Local London. Full story there.

RESIDENTS are fighting to save a former cinema from demolition and want it turned into a community centre.

The former Park Cinema, in Hither Green Lane, Hither Green, was built in 1913 and was used as the Kids Korner nursery until two years ago.

Now the property is lying derelict and its owner is seeking planning permission to demolish the building and transform it into a four storey high block of flats with commercial space on the ground floor.

But residents are angry the building, which was used as a cinema until 1957, might be lost forever and are urging Lewisham Council to save the building.

So far more than 100 signatures have been collected for a petition and campaigners would like to see the cinema used as an arts and community centre.

Campaigner Max Calo, of Mount Pleasant, Hither Green, says there is a lack of social facilities in the area.

The 40-year-old said: “It’s a crucial site in Hither Green and a corner stone of the community. If we take that away we burn any hope of regenerating the area.

“It’s a purpose built performance place in a crucial area so why not try to rescue it?”

An application to convert the cinema into flats, preserving the building’s shell, was granted by the council in 2007 but the development was eventually abandoned.

However, acting on behalf of the building’s current owner Abdul Hamid, from Ilford, architect Jerome Lejeune, of Agenda 21 Architects, says he doesn’t think preserving the building’s architecture is appropriate in this case.

The news story give a link to the Hither Green Hall blog, which appears to be just starting out.

1 comment:

Transpontine said...

I have fond memories of taking kids to Kids Corner, a frantic place like an indoor adventure playground. Adults could gran a cup of tea while the children ran around like monkeys. On one memorable occasion we were sitting drinking under a walkway. A child above us got overexcited and wet themselves, raining on our little tea party.