WORK on the Market Place’s grand new cinema, restaurant and bar redevelopment will start ‘within weeks’, according to developers.
The shopping centre’s owners Moorgarth has been granted permission to build a nine-screen cinema and open up the vaulted basements in the listed building, in a bid to bring a range of new eateries into the town centre.
The company’s chief executive Tim Vaughan said he was ‘thrilled’ that councillors have backed their plans, hailed as a start to the regeneration of Bolton town centre.
He added: “We were delighted by the overwhelming support given by the planning committee. We will now start work on site within the next few weeks.
“We are thrilled with the outcome of the meeting and were delighted by the overwhelming support given by the planning committee.
“We will now start work on site within the next few weeks.
“The addition of family-friendly restaurants, licensed bars and of course, our recently approved nine-screen community cinema operated by The Light in this beautiful building is a fresh and exciting way to create an event based destination.
“Operating during the day and night, it will offer people of all ages a place to enjoy some quality time with friends and family in a wonderful environment.
“We are excited to get work started and breathe life back into heritage buildings and give the people of Bolton, and beyond, a destination to be really proud of.
“We have already organised a series of Saturday Sessions, which are local bands and musicians playing every week on site.
“This area will become the entertainment focus for the town.”
The Light Cinemas has been confirmed as the operators of the screens. It currently runs a cinema in New Brighton, on the coast in the Wirral.
Mr Vaughan added the scheme had won the support of “many significant organisations” within Bolton town centre including the university, colleges, schools and businesses such as Asons solicitors — one of Bolton’s biggest employers.
On Friday, The Bolton News reported how rival shopping centre Crompton Place had strongly objected to the Market Place scheme, as they launched its own bid to build an 11-screen cinema in the town centre.
It will find out within the next two months whether its plans win the approval of the planning committee.