WITH Butlins officially closing its cinema to residents this week, the Somerset County Gazette has been looking at alternative places to watch movies on the big screen in the West Somerset area.

1) The Regal Theatre Film Society puts on two films a month - one for members only which tends to be more arty, and one more mainstream film for the general public.
The society has recently reached a fundraising target of £20,000 for a new state-of-the-art screen to be installed at the end of September.

Chairman of the Regal Film Society Victoria Thomas said: “The Regal Cinema had to stop working as a commercial cinema around the time Butlins opened its cinema to residents in 1994.

“Now with our new screen we will look into the possibility of adding to our programme, provided this coincides with the busy theatre.

“We will look at whether we may be able to run children’s films on a Saturday morning, something which will be lost with the Butlins cinema closing to residents.”

Mrs Thomas also said that the society was looking to screen live streams of top opera and theatre productions, making top quality productions available to people in rural areas.

“We are one of if not the biggest film society in the UK with 470 members.”

2) Watchet Cinema Club, which is based at Knights Templar School and now in its fifth year, also puts on two films a month and is open to anyone.

Organiser Anne Harrison said: “We put on films every second and fourth Friday of the month, and we usually get around 100 people per screening depending on the film.

“We don’t get the latest blockbusters but are usually about a month or two behind, but the cinema has a lovely community feel.”

3) Dulverton Films puts on screenings in the Town Hall once a fortnight. 

One of the organisers Jan Ross said: “ I think there are a lot of fantastic community cinemas in West Somerset. Somerset is a rural area with a lot of elderly people who do not want to travel further afield.

"Our club is in its seventh year and is going from strength to strength,” she said. For more information visit dulvertonfilms.co.uk.

4) Lynton Cinema is open every day of the year and has approximately 70 seats, with up-to-date screenings of the latest films of Fridays. For more information visit lyntoncinema.org.uk.

5) Bridgwater Cinema is in the town centre and also has a number of the latest films and is open every day. For more information visit bridgwater.scottcinemas.co.uk.

6) For more information about the Odeon cinema in Taunton which has multiple screenings every day visit odeon.co.uk/cinemas/taunton.

7) Nether Stowey also has a Village Cinema which puts on films in the Village Hall once a month. See netherstoweyvillagehall.co.uk/village-cinema.

8) Crowcombe too runs film nights once a month in Crowcombe Hall. Tickets can be purchased from Crowocombe Post Office and cost £5.

The film nights are held in conjunction with Moviola in Crowcombe Hall

Phone 01984 656720 or email crowcombecinema@gmail.com for more details.

9) In Allerford there is The Vale Cinema is located in the heart of Porlock Vale in Exmoor National Park.

Their website states: "We are a group of volunteers bringing cinema to this rural location. It's all about community, bringing neighbours, friends, family and visitors together to share a film experience."

For more information about screenings visit thevalecinema.co.uk.