Cinema goers get the chance to play a starring role...

Takeover: the Picture House
Takeover: the Picture House

FILM fans are being urged to join forces and help re-form the Friends of Hebden Bridge Picture House.

Hebden Royd Town Council wants to turn the building into a community cinema and is working on a plan to take over the management next spring.

A major part the strategy would be to re-launch the friends group, which was originally formed in 1997, said Susan Press, who chairs the Picture House Committee.

At that time there were fears that it might be sold to private developers.

The town council hopes to attract help and support from a wide range of people.

A re-launch meeting will be held in the autumn for those with the time, skills and desire to share in the council’s ambitious scheme to make the cinema better than ever.

Anyone interested should contact the town council or email

The friends will be forming a committee and seeking nominations from anyone interested in playing a key role.

Councillor Press said: “The town council is committed to involving as many people as we can to help ensure the Picture House continues to thrive and become even more successful.”

Calderdale Council agreed in March to transfer control of the cinema to the town council.

The decision was taken in the knowledge that it could not afford to pay for the major improvements that are needed.

A packed public meeting in the town discussed the options and pledged to fight to maintain the cinema and the jobs of the cinema staff.

The town council will reporting back to Calderdale Council in December.