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Scarborough Multiplex Cinema Plans Approved

Scarborough Multiplex Cinema Plans Approved

Published by Karen Liu with contributions by Local Democracy Reporter Carl Gavaghan at 2:05pm 7th November 2019. (Updated at 2:06pm 7th November 2019)

Plans for a multiplex cinema complex in Scarborough has been granted.

The authority’s planning committee approved the application for the six-screen attraction on the site of the former Atlantis water park.

It is the third time the scheme has been given planning permission but the committee was told that the scheme was now “ready to go”.

Jake Stentiford, the agent for the developer, Benchmark Leisure, said that the approval from the council was “all that was needed” before work could finally begin on the cinema.

He added that the previous schemes had fallen through due to changes in the restaurant market but that operators were now signed up and the scheme was ready to be built.

The wait for a multiplex cinema in Scarborough has become a long epic production with a number of false dawns over the last four years.

Earlier this year, Benchmark Leisure announced it was delaying the proposed opening date of the cinema complex for the third time, blaming the difficulties in securing restaurants to be part of the scheme.

The development was due to be open in 2018, that was then pushed back until July 2019 and then, most recently, changed to late 2020.

The scheme is for a six-screen cinema, 53 apartments, five restaurants and four shops, as well as a bar, gym and 59 car parking spaces, which includes ten disabled bays and 12 spaces reserved for staff of the businesses. 

The plans originally approved had more than 300 public parking spaces.

At today’s hearing Cllr John Atkinson (no political affiliation), a Northstead ward councillor where the cinema would be located, urged the committee to reject the plan due to its appearance, saying it was not in keeping with “a tourist area and an area of outstanding beauty”.

He added:

“On behalf of the town and the tourists we don’t want to be looking at this every time we pass, [it is] something that looks like an office block from a financial district.”

Committee chairman Cllr Eric Broadbent (Lab), who also represents the Northstead ward, responded:  

“Perhaps I speak to different people in the ward but I speak to many residents who want progress on this site.

I think the youngsters in our town are having to travel to York to go to the cinema and it will enhance this area.”

The councillors were told that following a viability assessment the developer would not be required to pay approximately £770,000 in Section 106 monies, which would have been used to provide affordable housing, school places and play facilities.

Instead, £40,000 will be paid towards highways schemes in the area of the cinema.

Cllr David Jeffels (Con) said there had been “many false dawns” when it came to the cinema but he was pleased that it looked like an end could be in sight.

He added:

“I think the benefits to the borough from this development could be very great indeed.”

The plans were approved by 14 votes to 1.


There are 4 comments on this page.

zara, on 7th November 2019 2:46pm
WELL THERES A SURPRISE. Not only do they get their wishes on this but get away with not paying the Section 106 money. Please do not tell me this council are not doing deals with this company, it is absolutely ridiculous. What can the taxpayers do, we have tried changing the councillors but of course it is the same ones just job changing..
zara, on 7th November 2019 2:57pm
by the way who was the one councillor with some sense? I notice on the facebook comments page lots of people wanting it built but not one of them mentioned the fact that Benchmark are not paying the £770.000 in section 106 payments anymore because of a viability issues, translated means they have no money. Good luck on ever seeing the cinema.
phoenixweb, on 7th November 2019 3:57pm
Ok good news it is going ahead. BUT i would be fantastic news if Benchmark were to immediately start work on groutnd works etc to at least show real intent. Re section 106 payments have never been sure why developers should contribute to major social housing and play schemes not related directly to their investment. Yes they should pay towards road modifications and and transport links (an hourly bus service down North Marine Road finishing at approx 7pm is not going to serve this new development).
I look forward to works commencing ASAP
BTW what is the state with Alpamere?
Fileyman, on 7th November 2019 5:16pm
So we are now told there will only be 47 parking places for normal public parking.

Just what planet are SBC on.

A six screen cinema, a gym, 5 restaurants, and shops.

No bus service..

So please SBC tell us just where people are going to park.

Will SBC also tells us just how much is still owed in the loan given for Alpamare.

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