New Daventry cinema awarded licence as construction continues

A new cinema being built in Daventry has been awarded its licence by the district council.
An artist's impression of how the completed cinema will look in Daventry.An artist's impression of how the completed cinema will look in Daventry.
An artist's impression of how the completed cinema will look in Daventry.

The four-screen cinema, in Mulberry Place, was recently awarded the licence – which allows it to show films, sell alcohol, play live and recorded music and serve refreshments.

The licence allows the cinema to open between 8am and 2am the following morning, and also hold 15 events a year where licensable activities can take place up to 2.30am.

The applicants, Melcorpo Property and Arc Cinema Ltd – the latter being the cinema’s operator – had also applied for 10 ‘all-nighters’ each year, where it could open between the open and closing times from 2am until 8am.

But members of Daventry District Council’s licensing committee had concerns over the all-nighters, with one resident sending their objections in a written statement that read: “I am concerned that when the cinema closes and has ‘all-nighters’ the customers will walk down North Street, where their voices will be heard, car doors will be slammed and shouting may occur – as it does at the moment when the pubs close at 12am on weekends. This is a major concern for me and my family.”

The three councillors on the committee cinema granted the licence, though they removed the ‘all-nighters’ from the licence with a view to Temporary Event Notices being used instead – initially to see if they caused any issues.

The £12.3 million cinema is currently being built on the former library site, with the cost of the project being stumped up by the district council themselves before it is replaced by a new unitary council next April. Arc Cinema was named as the operator in October, with a scheduled opening date of Easter next year.

That opening date, however, was set before the current coronavirus pandemic, and asked if this had been affected a spokesman for Daventry District Council said: “Our contractors Willmott Dixon have implemented social distancing measures which are allowing them to safely continue the construction of the steel frame at the Mulberry Place cinema development.

The cinema is undergoing construction at the moment, though progress is 'slower' due to the coronavirus pandemic.The cinema is undergoing construction at the moment, though progress is 'slower' due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The cinema is undergoing construction at the moment, though progress is 'slower' due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Progress is slightly slower than under normal circumstances, but it’s too early to say whether challenges posed by the pandemic will impact on the planned opening date of Easter 2021.”

As well as the cinema, the redeveloped Mulberry Place will offer an adjacent restaurant building and a new civic square off North Street.