Help still required to restore Lincoln's Ritz cinema to its former glory
In less than a week, more than 100 people have pledged their support and time to help to re-open The Ritz.
Off the Bench has asked for volunteers to come forward and help clear out the currently derelict venue and then act as staff when it opens later in the year.
But with around £750,000 needed to complete the refurbishment, Off the Bench is now looking to local businesses to pledge their support too.
The group has launched a seat appeal and is now urging the city's business owners to sponsor one of the 480 seats for £100.
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Film fans can also buy a season ticket for the cinema in another bid to help drum up funds.
Pete Genders, chief executive officer of Off the Bench, said: "I am absolutely blown away by the support for this project – the response and offers of help have been outstanding.
"But we need all the help we can get and we really need local businesses to come on board and offer their services to make our dream a reality."
One local business which has already offered to help with the redevelopment is Lincoln-based glazier company Acorn Glass and Glazing.
Owner Stephen Allen has generously offered to provide the labour for any glazing work needed for The Ritz free of charge.
He said: "I'm a glazier and have been for a long time. I moved to Lincoln a few years ago and started my business, but sadly The Ritz was a little bit before my time.
"In that building they're going to have to replace a lot of the old style glass to bring it in line with modern safety standards, but we're going to supply that labour to Off the Bench completely free of charge.
"We'll also do any future glazing work in the building free of charge as well while the redevelopment goes on.
"I've heard a lot of stories and memories from people when it comes to The Ritz and I'm quite nostalgic when it comes to things like that.
"We have a massive need for another cinema in Lincoln because the one we have at the moment is far too expensive, so I'm happy to help in any way I can.
"Not only that, but I can't wait to take my family there once it's opened."
For more information on how you can help with the reopening of The Ritz, call Off the Bench on 01522 837293.
Alternatively, visit www.otblincs.org.uk
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