Cinema gets sound upgrade

COUNCILLORS unanimously voted to spend more than £17,000 upgrading their town cinema by introducing a digital surround sound system for movies.The Regal Theatre, Stowmarket, hosts film and live entertainment throughout the year, but the number of people who have watched movies there fell from 10,009 in 2003 to 8,003 last year.

COUNCILLORS unanimously voted to spend more than £17,000 upgrading their town cinema by introducing a digital surround sound system for movies.

The Regal Theatre, Stowmarket, hosts film and live entertainment throughout the year, but the number of people who have watched movies there fell from 10,009 in 2003 to 8,003 last year.

The town council owns the classic 1930s cinema and theatre, and councillors are keen to see it upgraded so it can better compete with the larger chains at Ipswich.

Earlier this year the cinema and theatre was forecast to make a loss of almost £50,000, and a consultant has been appointed to run the complex.


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At Stowmarket Town Council's finance meeting yesterday, councillors agreed to spend thousands of pounds on the new sound system for the cinema auditorium. It is hoped the new system will be in place by the end of June.

Councillor Gordon Paton told the meeting, at the council's chambers in Milton Road South: "This is something that is very much needed and shows that we are investing in our asset.

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"Hopefully we will now attract larger audiences, which would be wonderful.''

Cllr Frank Whittle added: "There has been poor quality sound, so hopefully this will get a good response once it has been installed.''

Council officers advised the meeting that the new system should improve the sound system at the cinema enormously.

The town council has had complaints about the quality of the sound system and has been embarking on improvements to the town centre cinema.

Other initiatives that have been explored include upgrading the theatre's heating system as councillors strive to make the complex more attractive to residents.

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