Charity which runs Wales’ oldest cinema has lost nearly £100,000 since it closed because of asbestos

The charity that runs Wales’ oldest cinema has lost almost £100,000 since its forced closure in December after asbestos was found in the building.

The building, in Brynmawr, Blaenau Gwent , was shut down to “protect public health and safety” while investigations were carried out.

Now the charity that runs the picture house is appealing for £50,000 on website Crowdfunder on a page titled “Save the Market Hall project.”  The page reads:

“The building itself has historic asbestos issues and due to these most unfortunate of circumstances the venue has been rendered temporarily unusable and in need of remedial improvement works.” 

Although we are working with partners and are in the throes of resolving the issues that have arisen, this has placed the trust in a precarious position.

With current losses during the closure in the realm of £95,000 and with more income generation opportunities being lost week by week, our reserves are dwindling.

With the need to keep staff employed and the payment of potential works, the charity has been forced into the position where we are requesting the help of our friends, patrons and all those who have a love of the venue and all it represents to help us secure its future.”

They asked for help ranging from “the price of a child’s ticket” to the “most generous of donations.”

In a video posted online, director Peter Watkins-Hughes urged people to help the Brynmawr cinema. He says:

“The market hall cinema is more than just Wales’ oldest cinema, it’s a true Welsh national treasure.  For over 122 years it’s been entertaining countless generations of families from both near and afar.

Queen Victoria was still on the throne when it first opened its doors in 1894, and since then it has survived two world wars and outlasted 28 UK prime ministers, and in 2014 it was actually awarded the title of UK Cinema of the Year.”

To help, visit the CrowFunder site here.