I have never been there myself so don’t really have an opinion. Generally I’m not in favour of keep old buildings going just because they have a history but its a shame to see any cinema closed unless its to be replaced by a better one.
Press Release from the campaign team…
BANDS RALLY TO SAVE LIVERPOOL’S OLDEST CINEMA
Friday 1st December 2006 sees the New Picket host a fund raising gig for the ‘Save Woolton Cinema‘ campaign. Woolton Cinema is almost 80 years old and has survived the great depression, World War II and the multiplex invasion of the 1980s. It is also a childhood haunt of John Lennon’s, inspiring the lyrics to his ‘A Day in the Life’. He and the Quarrymen (Lennon’s original band) called it ‘The Bug House’. With its art deco interior and plush Pullman seats, it is loved by many and since its closure on 3rd September 2006 there has been an outcry around Liverpool and beyond.
A team of campaigners have been working tirelessly to raise the profile of the cinema and fund raising in the hope of buying the building which is up for sale and run it as a charity. A website designed by one of the charity trustees, Andy Roberts, keeps everyone informed of how the campaign is going (www.savewooltoncinema.co.uk). There is a page of supporters including Willy Russell, Alex Cox and many more. There is a guestbook which has been signed by people as far away as Canada. Supporter Willy Russell said, “in all the world my favourite place to watch a film is Woolton Cinema”.
Although the campaign has supporters from Liverpool City Council, there has been no offers of funding, suggesting that those holding the purse strings at the council do not feel that the wonderful picture house has a part to play in Liverpool’s Capital of Culture 2008.
Glen Simpson and Sally Morrison-Griffiths, the initiators of the campaign, contacted Phil Hayes of the New Picket to organise a fundraising gig because they knew he had been through a similar plight when the original Flying Picket was threatened with closure. Phil did not hesitate to help out and between the three of them they put together a line-up in just 3 weeks!
One of the eighties’ best loved bands and Liverpudlian legends, CHINA CRISIS will be headlining. They are celebrating 25 years since their debut release ‘African and White’ and are about to embark on a tour in 2007. Formed in Liverpool in 1979, core duo Gary Daly and Eddie Lundon rose to fame with intelligent, melodic slices of post-punk pop such as the classic hits ‘Black Man Ray’, ‘King In A Catholic Style (Wake Up)’ and ‘Wishful Thinking’.
“We are so lucky to have China Crisis playing the gig, we’re really looking forward to it. We are pleased with the support we have had from so many Liverpool bands – so many infact we might have to put on a couple more gigs!”, says Sally Morrison-Griffiths. The line-up includes Liverpool bands MuddyHead, The Mersey Beatles, The Circle and The Riffs and also an all female rock band called the Tommys, that has been compared to Blondie and the Ramones. www.savewooltoncinema.co.uk/supporters.htm
Other bands including Hot Club de Paris, Amsterdam and the Aeroplanes are supporters of the campaign too. “It doesn’t surprise me that local bands get behind something like this because there is a huge artistic community in Liverpool as well as people with a strong sense of what is right. Surely if Liverpool City Council claim to call Liverpool the Capital of Culture, it is right that they should support the art and culture that we have, because there’s plenty of it!” says Sally.
Steve Howard of the Mersey Beatles says, “I’d hate to see yet another piece of Liverpool heritage disappear to make way for a souless replica of a business found in any city in the country”.
The fundraising gig is on Friday 1st December 2006 at the New Picket, Jordan Street, Liverpool L1 0BW
0151 708 6789
Tickets are £8 or £5 for concessions and are available from Liverpool’s Probe Records in Slater Street 0151 708 8815 or directly from Campaign HQ email@example.com or tel: 0151 428 8495