Campaign to save former Bristol Art Deco cinema receives boost

The decision to make the building a community asset has been upheld
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Campaigners who want to save a former Bristol Art deco cinema are celebrating after receiving a boost. 

St George's Hall, which contains the former Redfield Cinema on Church Road in Redfield, has been upheld as an Asset of Community Value (ACV) despite an appeal by the landowner.

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Developers Landrose plan to divide the Art Deco cinema into 13 HMO ‘cluster units’ comprising 44 en-suite bedrooms with communal kitchens, as well as a gym and communal workspace facilities. A commercial space for a small ‘boutique cinema’ is also proposed.   

But campaigners want to see the building turned into a community space and cinema with less housing. The 111-year-old cinema at the back of the St George’s Hall building, which was previously a Wetherspoon pub until it closed in 2021. 

The Save Redfield Cinema team hopes the ACV status will show why St George’s Hall should be 'a vital cultural space for Redfield and beyond'.

The building was initially awarded ACV status in December 2021, following a nomination by the campaign. But this decision was overturned after an appeal by Landrose.

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The campaign team sought legal help, leading to the awarding of ACV status again in April 2023. But Landrose once more challenged the decision through their solicitors. 

Now independent legal experts have upheld the council's decision to accept the campaign’s nomination to list St George's Hall as an ACV.

Resident and Save Redfield Cinema campaign member Brendan Tate Wistreich led the defence with support from University of Bristol Law Clinic.

He said: “On behalf of everyone who has supported our campaign, well in the thousands, I thank you for taking our nomination and credentials as a group seriously and recognising the considerable social value that this building has provided since 1912, up until it was recently closed, as well as the potential it could offer our local neighbourhood into the future." 

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The Save Redfield Cinema campaign is inviting its supporters to a public meeting on December 10 at The Spark Space in Bethesda Methodist Church on Church Road discuss the campaign’s future plans in light of the upcoming planning application decision.  

Bristol City Council is expected to make a decision on Landrose’s planning application for the site in early 2024. 

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