The University of Westminster will re-open its historic Regent Street Cinema to the public in May 2015 after a three-year renovation. Situated in the heart of London’s West End, the University of Westminster’s Regent Street Cinema is where the first-ever performance of moving images took place. Created by the Lumière brothers, this was shown to a paying British audience in 1896, paving the way for a century of cinematographic innovation. In 1980, Regent Street Cinema was turned into a student lecture hall and hasn’t been open to the public since.
The reinstated Regent Street Cinema and state-of-the-art auditorium will offer the best repertory programming, serving as a unique arts venue for quality world cinema as well as lectures, screenings, workshops and events. Above all, the cinema will bring together students and industry professionals, nurturing future talent and providing a platform for University of Westminster’s outstanding film students and faculty members to showcase their award-winning work.
The University of Westminster launched a major campaign in 2012 to restore one of the most important cinemas in Britain to its former glory, reinforcing the University’s position as a leading global centre for excellence in the arts and film production. The Quintin Hogg Trust donated £1m to the University’s campaign, followed by a £1.5m Heritage Lottery Fund grant, which helped in meeting the £6.1m target. Further fundraising has been supported through the ‘Name a Seat’ donor campaign complete with a personalised plaque on the selected seat(s) in the cinema.