The Vue Cinema at Walton-le-Dale will be demolished to make way for restaurants and new shops, it has been revealed.
In December Royal London, which owns the Capitol Centre, said such redevelopment was “a contingency plan” while they waiting to hear whether Vue would renew its lease.
Now Vue have confirmed to Royal London they will be leaving the site, and South Ribble planning bosses have approved the site redesign.
A spokesman for Royal London said: “We can confirm that Vue is not renewing the lease and that the building will be demolished, however we are not able to share more information on who is lined up to take over the site yet.”
Vue has declined to comment on the situation after being contacted by the Evening Post, but in December confirmed the cinema would not close in 2015.
The news heightened speculation that Vue will be taking a central position in the Preston Markets plan, which would see a cinema created where the Indoor Market currently stands. But yesterday Preston Council denied this was the case.
A council spokesman said: “The council’s aim is to have a new cinema within the markets quarter of the city centre but we are not in direct discussions with Vue Cinemas at this stage.”
Redevelopment plans are to demolish the seven-screen building and restaurant, replacing them with a 33,000 sqft new non-food retail unit.
Because Frankie & Benny’s want to stay at the site, a new restaurant pod, big enough for two units, would be built on the car park near to the existing McDonalds. A third restaurant of 3,000 sqft is proposed to in-fill the gap between the new retail unit and Prezzo, the later to receive a new fascade.
A new security pod is also proposed in a bid to cut down on anti-social behaviour.