Whiteley residents give cinema scheme mixed reviews

An artist's impression of the proposed cinema
An artist's impression of the proposed cinema
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Plans for a nine-screen cinema split opinions among residents who went to have a look at the plans.

The Cineworld multiplex is planned to open in Whiteley in May 2015 dependant on planning applications.

People were invited to Meadowhall Leisure Centre to look over the plans and leave their comments.

Councillor Mike Evans, chairman of Whiteley Parish Council, was at the exhibition speaking to locals.

He said: ‘We are going to take it all on board. As a council, we consult.

‘We will try and answer all the residents’ questions before we go to planning.’

The proposed cinema will be built on what is currently unused space and a car park.

Some residents voiced concerns that the proposed cinema will attract more cars to Whiteley, adding to their traffic jam woes.

June Bradley, 66, of Sheridan Gardens, said: ‘It’s going to be chaos. It will only bring more people into Whiteley. The roads need to be addressed urgently.’

Clive Davis, 50, of Angelica Way, was in favour of the development.

He said: ‘It was always meant to be a town. As a town we need facilities like this. At the moment we have to leave Whiteley all the time and half of the traffic problems come from people leaving.’

Some residents were not convinced that a cinema was the best use of the land, instead preferring to see a swimming pool or a church.

Sally Thompson, 36, of Bluebell Way, said: ‘I would rather see a swimming pool being built. The cinema is a luxury that we go to twice a year. As a family we would use a swimming pool at least three times a week.’

A group of elderly residents were overjoyed at the proposals.

Betty McKenzie, 80, of Lovage Road, said: ‘I don’t care what others think, we think it’s great. We want it.’

Her sister, Maureen McKenzie, 75, also of Lovage Road, said: ‘In all seriousness, the kids need it and we older people need it.’

The exhibition will be open again today from 11am until 5pm. The plans can be viewed at whiteleypc.info.