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David Stewart MSP Congratulates Thurso Cinema

7th November 2013

Highlands and Islands (Scottish Labour) MSP David Stewart has congratulated Thurso cinema on receiving a highly commended award at the “Screen International Awards” held in London last Wednesday evening which saw the Ormlie Road venue receive an award in the exhibitor of the year category for cinemas with 50 screens or under.

The Thurso cinema, which opened in July 2012, has been extremely successful since opening its doors to the public, welcoming around 65,000 customers in its first year alone. The theatre has two cinema screens and the owner Rob Arthur has plans to develop the cinema and create up to six screens and an adjoining family restaurant.

Mr Arthur has ambitious aims to develop a network of cinemas throughout the country over the next six years, which would be serviced by a specialist team in Thurso of around 30 staff. In a development last week Mr Arthur visited Fort William to discuss plans to open a four screen cinema in the West Highland town.

The Cinema in Thurso has proved a true success story for Caithness and Mr Stewart hopes this can be repeated across the region.

Mr Stewart who put down a motion in the Scottish Parliament congratulating Thurso cinema on its award said:

“Some of the biggest blockbuster films in recent years have featured film shot in the Highlands. Batman, The Dark Knight Rises featured a plane flying over the Highlands out of Inverness, the latest James Bond movie, Skyfall was partly filmed in Glencoe and Ridley Scott’s Prometheus on Skye.

“The film industry has brought in over £1.1m for the local economy over the last number of years and I think it is great that these iconic films, parts of which were shot in the Highlands are now able to be screened in Cinemas from Thurso to Oban.

“Since Thurso cinema opened it has provided a great source of jobs, economic activity and entertainment for the far north, I would be delighted to see plans to open more cinemas across the Highlands in the coming years and in particular Fort William. The Highland film industry is booming and I want our towns to benefit too.”

Motion S4M-08158: David Stewart, Highlands and Islands, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 04/11/2013

That the Parliament congratulates Thurso Cinema in Caithness on being recognised as one of the top cinemas in the country after being shortlisted in the Screen Awards 2013, which were held in London; understands that the Ormlie Road venue received a highly commended award in the Exhibitor of the Year, 50 screens or under category; understands that Thurso Cinema opened its doors to the public in July 2012 and received a £350,000 digital makeover last year; further understands that the cinema drew 65,000 customers in its first year to become one of the big success stories of the Caithness economy in recent years, and believes that the cinema owner has plans to expand the Thurso-based venture, including to other sites in the Highlands, such as Fort William, in the coming years.

Supported by: Jackie Baillie, Hanzala Malik, George Adam, Margaret McDougall, Richard Lyle, Rob Gibson, Anne McTaggart, Jamie McGrigor, Mary Scanlon, Kevin Stewart, Bill Kidd, Gil Paterson, Annabelle Ewing, Mike MacKenzie, John Finnie, Sarah Boyack, David Torrance, Jean Urquhart, Mark McDonald, Colin Beattie


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