Why Worthing’s cinemas are our crown jewels: One Thing or a Mother

Before I moved to Worthing, in the heady days before children, I was the proud owner of a Cineworld Unlimited card.

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 11:54 am

We were living in Shoreham, and my husband and I would go to the cinema at Brighton Marina at least once a week, sometimes seeing two films in a row with a quick break for dinner in between.

Basically, if there was a new film being released, I was seeing it because I had a card that allowed me to see as many films as I liked for a set monthly price. And because it was a big multiplex I could go to pretty much every film that Hollywood and beyond cared to release.

So when I moved to Worthing knowing there was no national chain cinema here, I felt a bit concerned.

It's got to be one of the best cinema's in the UK, right?! Pic Steve Robards SR2010222
It's got to be one of the best cinema's in the UK, right?! Pic Steve Robards SR2010222

How was I going to get my movie fix now? Would the two, as I perceived them to be, ‘tiny independent’ offerings be able to compete in any way? A thousand per cent yes!

No offence to Cineworld and all the national chains – they do a great job and offer a lot of variety.

But if you value character, charm, convenience, and perhaps best of all, cheaper prices, then The Dome and The Connaught just can’t be beaten. And going down the road either way from Worthing, the Windmill Cinema in Littlehampton and Ropetackle in Shoreham both offer movies in fab settings for way less cash than you’d have to hand over to one of the big chains.

It might be controversial, but I really don’t want Worthing to get a multi-screen cinema.

I have been completely won over by the Edwardian splendor of The Dome, and the art-deco styling of The Connaught. To me, they are one of the town’s biggest selling points.

So you can imagine how excited I was (ridiculously, super duper, over-excited), when cinemas were allowed to open again last week.

My family really loves to support both venues, so we went as much as we could during lockdown. And we were booked in on Saturday for the first weekend of reopening.

Peter Rabbit 2 wasn’t necessarily my first choice, but The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It didn’t seem quite family-friendly enough for a seven and nearly three-year-old.

It was my little boy’s first time at the cinema since we used to take him as a newborn. Covid restrictions mean everybody must be temperature checked and registered for test and trace – so it was a bit later than the scheduled start time by the time we got inside, but they had paused the film while everybody got through the queue.

My son was instantly amazed, pointing at the high ceilings and ‘wowing’ at the lights.

The film was actually quite good, and you just can’t beat the history-soaked surroundings for a brilliant cinematic experience.

If you don’t regularly visit the local cinemas and theatres in our towns, please, please consider giving them a try. They are absolutely the jewels in our town’s crowns.

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