It’s been over a month now since we picked up our tools following the respray of the cinema and although progress is definitely afoot, it’s very slow going.
At this stage of the project all of the tasks start overlapping and it becomes a 3D jigsaw of which one is never sure if all the pieces even exist! For example the electrics need to be in place before the environment is finished and knowing the electrical requirements involve buying the equipment, thousands of pounds worth. One then needs to consider finishing materials for the walls and floors according to both aesthetics and acoustic performance, whilst not forgetting we have a serious width restriction as regards seating. Before you can even lift a saw to begin work you have to plan the location of the equipment as mounting points for heavy objects like projectors need to be in place before any cladding goes up. I’m sure all of this is bread and butter to anyone in the building trade or a serious DIY enthusiast, but for me with our deadlines and relative inexperience its been a blood pressure raising time.
The floor of the theatre is now soundproofed with 2mm thick barrier matt, then insulated with 20mm of Celotex/Recticel and clad in 12mm ply. The extruded aluminium side walls are covered by 4mm ply, backed with the same 2mm barrier matt and painted with MDF primer on the face ready for covering – carpet? We’re not sure. Fingers crossed this will provide the basic level of soundproofing we need.
Presently the work is focused on the bulkhead and rear walls. The bulkhead has proved a challenge as the doorway needed enlarging for us to make a safe emergency exit – were people that much smaller in 1967?! The film reel cupboards, accessible from the cab, are also located on the bulkhead and have needed rebuilding due to a touch of woodworm and a slight dimension alteration to accommodate the modern AV equipment being installed.
With this phase nearly complete we’re already looking towards fabrication of the tiered seating frame and have just handed our upholsterers the restored wooden seat frames to cover in our chosen (fire retarded) fabric. While also, a local mould maker is nearing completion of the mould for the dome panels above the cab, which will promptly be sent off to Lancashire for 8 brand new acryllic panels to be drape formed and sent back to our workshop for installation.
Busy times, I just hope we can keep up the pace and try to conclude the restoration for springtime…….. For more images visit our interior rebuild gallery.