Friday 20 April 2012: The "Wee Pictures", Campbeltown
Today was Funders Day at the Campbeltown Community Cinema., known locally as the "Wee Pictures".
The Cinema will celebrate its 100th anniversary next year , making it the oldest continuously operating cinema in Scotland and one of the oldest in Europe. Opened in May 1913 (only six years after the first cinema in Scotland, which was in Glasgow) it is a minature masterpiece of "Glasgow school" art noouveau, designed by Albert V Gardner who also masterminded the atmopsheric interior changes in 1934, which are still there.
Listed at A for its exterior and interior it now needs a major restoration which would preserve the ubilding for the future, broaden the base of its income and reduce its running costs.
It has been owned and operated by a community company for 25 years (that in itself is a record) which is now seeking to undertake a major project that needs naitonal support. The Heritage Lottery Fund has supported the initial feasibililty, design and business case work (and HLF Scottish Head and fellow blipper Colin Mclean was there today ) but there now needs to be participation from other bodies such as Historic Scotalnd, HIE, Leader, the Big Lottery and from private donors.
The funders day brought together all those interests and more, including descendents of some of the original shareholders. The vent also feature photographs by the MacGrory Brothers, great Campbeltown photographers of the late 19th and early 20th century whose collection was bequethed to the town and which could be exhibited here as part of the new plans.
The picture shows David Mayo, the Developpment Manager of the Project, introducing the event , with a slide of the present projection equipment behind him.