Landlord 'Does Not Know' Why Picturehouse Cinema Is Delayed
Both sides appear to blame each other as 'discussions' continue
A new cinema on Chiswick High Road apparently remains a distant prospect with both parties involved now blaming each other for the delays.
The landlord of one of the two buildings where the Picturehouse Cinema planned to open has rejected suggestions that he is responsible for the hold-up.
Rambert site was planned location of cinema
The cinema company admitted six months ago that it was taking longer than originally envisaged and claimed it was still working on obtaining permission from the landlord to carry out the works. The company received planning permission in 2014 and had hoped to open in January 2015.
According to the original planning application lodged with Hounslow Council there were two owners of the site, Ballet Rambert, and Lochstill Ltd. The latter's parent company is London and Bath Estates, and its director is Mr. Kim Gottlieb who was associated with the Octopus project at Chiswick Roundabout.
Mr. Kim Gottlieb told Chiswickw4.com he did not know why the work on the cinema had not yet begun. "All I can say is that nothing much is happening and it looks like nothing much will happen in the near future. I don't know why it's not progressing." He said his company was "still in discussions" with Picturehouse and he could not make any further comment.
Asked last week for an update, the spokesman for the cinema group said,"We are still working with our landlord on the building proposals and will let everyone know as soon as we can."
With new planning rules making it easier to convert buildings to residential use there has been some speculation locally that developing the Chiswick High Road site into flats would be more lucrative than a cinema.
Since the project was initiated Picturehouse has come under pressure to pay staff the London Living Wage, but has also faced opposition from local residents in surrounding streets who opposed its closing hours and have complained about the possibility of parking pressure. An agreement on payment for an extension of the existing CPZ is still being sorted out.
Recently Curzon Cinema was named as the preferred bidder for the Old Acton Library site. This venue will have better parking and be more accessible for some Chiswick residents. The Hammersmith Town Hall area is also planning improvements including a three-screen community cinema to be operated by Curzon.
March 28, 2015