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KICC’s ‘Open Day’ at 25 Church Road,10-6pm Sat 11 August

cinema picture palace campaign 25 church road cinema for crystal palace

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#1 Picture Palace Campaign

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Posted 10 August 2012 - 11:12 AM

Picture Palace Campaign Update

Cinema for Crystal Palace?

KICC’s ‘Open Day’ at 25 Church Road

10am – 6pm, Saturday 11 August

Your chance to see hear their plans and then take part in our survey

We hope you’ll take this opportunity of going to the ‘Open Day’ to give Kingsway International Christian Centre (KICC) your views and to find out how they intend to operate this D2 “leisure” venue

The “Open Day” comes after three years of asking KICC to consult the community. This is our first opportunity as a community to speak to KICC about their plans and comes as a result of a meeting with the Campaign and our MPs in July, which finally KICC accepted.

KICC’s Trustees gave a sincere apology for any past failings in their approach to public consultation, saying they wanted to “move forward and correct wrongs, and to positively engage with the Crystal Palace community”. They offered to hold an ‘Open Day’ to set out their intentions for 25 Church Road more clearly and transparently.

KICC says it has produced a business plan and intends to hire out the building for conferences and ‘community’ space.

We say: The key elements of that business plan (hours of operation, types and numbers of events, anticipated numbers etc) should be published so that the community can fully understand the short, medium and long term plans for the building.

KICC stressed that many of its proposed activities – including a Saturday Cinema Club, zumba and keep-fit classes, business seminars, counselling, and work with schools – would fall into the D2 category. It has already installed a single-screen cinema for showing family-friendly films on a conditional basis (that is subject to KICC’s approval).

We say: The ‘family cinema’ is a poor substitute for a professionally run and programmed cinema. And while KICC assures us that its other proposed activities are legitimately ‘D2’ in nature, they are unable to give us any information about them.

KICC also gave an express undertaking that there would be no religious activities at 25 Church Road under its current planning use. However, it was telling that KICC confirmed its ultimate aim is still to secure 25 Church Road as a ‘Place of Worship’ despite having been refused change of use by Bromley planning committee in 2009 on the grounds that:

“The loss of an important entertainment/leisure use within Use Class D2 and the introduction of a mixed use including a place of worship within Use Class D1, would result in a reduction in the range of facilities provided within the town centre, detrimental to the proper functioning of the daytime and evening economy and harmful to the social, cultural and economic characteristics of the area”.

To read more about our view of what KICC told us at the meeting and to catch up all with all the latest news about the Campaign and 25 Church Road, you can read the full newsletter HERE

We would be very grateful if you could give us your feedback please by taking part in our survey on the day or on-line via: (This will be online on Saturday - we'll post the link on the forum)

We would also encourage you to make your ward councillors and MPs aware of your views. Thank you for your continuing support.

Support a Cinema for Crystal Palace - Join the Campaign
Website: www.picture-palace.org
Facebook: Picture Palace Campaign
Twitter: @picturepalace

#2 charlie



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 08:18 AM


#3 andreas



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 08:24 AM

And here's the link to the on-line survey:

It would be great to have feedback from all who attend the Open Day.
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#4 Summit Lover

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 08:39 AM

Am in Dorset this weekend but await with interest the views of any who attend.

#5 Retired Member 1

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 12:19 PM

I was in Bambino this a.m. until past 10am but nothing seem to happen (sorry had appointment with electrician - yes our Jeff - so had to go) ..... only saw few people handing leaflets (I assume they were pro Cinema) ... let us know how it went
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#6 Nanazola



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 03:40 PM

Went along to have a look. It's such a beautiful cinema space, breaks your heart to think it'll be used for a commercial church. Huge stalls and circle seating area, and big meeting room upstairs plus 3 offices. Fantastic views over Surrey which would make for an amazing cafe/restaurant!

I didn't ask any questions, so I'd be interested to hear what responses Cit M, Posie and Norwood Lad got if they went. I felt a bit intimidated to be honest, not because of anything the KICC people did, indeed we were offered juice and biscuits on the way out - but there was a slight edge to the atmosphere and any minute I expected someone to say 'Excuse me! You can't go up there/ in there!' It was practically empty when we went, around 2.30pm, but I saw Charlie engaging with a couple of guys with 'Stars of Christ' or something on their jackets, and Ziwa giving out leaflets outside. Well done, and I do hope more cinema supporters went along and were braver than me!

#7 RetiredMember2



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 08:26 PM

First impression: From the outside you would never have known this was an "Open day" - no signage, no pomp or ceremony, not even a bunch of balloons. I located an open door and entered 25 CR at 11am. There were two people in the reception-come caff-come IT area. I introduced myself and was directed to the main auditorium and the representative who was fielding questions.

He was engaged in heated debate with a group of inquisitors - I took the opportunity to explore the building before seeking his counsel. Firstly I was struck by the v serious technical kit. Standing speakers nearly as tall as me either side of the stage, right by the fire exits. I'm no sound proofing expert but I do know main leakage points are doors and windows - no wonder Patterson Rd residents were disturbed by the recent sound testing.

There are amps on the ceiling both above the stage and at the back of the first row of seating. I counted a total of 22 amps and mobile monitors. When I asked about the size of this kit and it's implication I was told it was nothing to worry about as a limiter had been installed and the building soundproofed.

The chunky fire escape that scales the side of the building is very very noise and as the building heated up the door leading directly on to the fire escape was propped open. The air con was either not switched on or useless. I can see why Gala used to prop all fire exits open during the summer months.

Upstairs there is fixed seating for 293 people. i sat in the back row and was reminded of a recent Easy Jet flight - me knees were squashed against the back of the chair in front. The fixed seating had been removed from the last two rows at the back - the wings of the venue spread to accommodate maximum capacity.

The main auditorium had 377 removable seats in one section, by far the largest floor space was standing room only.

Total of 670 seats.

Be interesting to see how the space is utilized on 25th to accommodate the 1200 attendees for the business conference.

Question Time:

Citizen M (CM): Hello I'm xxxx, local resident and I'm hoping to find out exactly what the plans are for this building.
Offers outstretched hand and shakes hand of KICC rep
KICC rep (KR) reciprocates and offers his name.
CM: What's your role in the organisation?
KR: I'm just a volunteer.
CM: Can I speak with a Trustee or senior manager?
KR: Can I help?
CM: Yes can you direct me to someone in authority?
KR: That's me.
CM: OK, let's see how we go. Are you a local resident?
KR: Yes - Sydenham.
CM: What is this building going to be used for?
KR: The community. This is for the community to hire and for conferences, seminars and exhibitions.
CM: All of those fall outside the permitted use class of the building.
KR: No they don't.
CM: Yes they do
KR: I'm not going to argue with you.
CM: Conferences and hall hire are D1 activities if you were told otherwise you have been misled.
KR: We know conferences and community hall hire are D2.
CM: Where did you get that information?
KR: The internet it's on the internet.
CM: Not the UK government website then. I can assure you those uses fall into the same D1 class as churches, Drs surgeries, dentists, community halls What is being proposed is a mixed use venue and requires a permitted change of use.
KR: That's not the case, look at Fairfiled Halls - it operates as D2 and runs conferences it's the same here.
CM: Fairfield Halls is in Croydon Town Centre and has car park for 1,000.
KR: Ah the parking. I really don't see that as an issue, this area's always been bad for parking KICC won't make any difference.
CM: So where are you advising people to park?
KR: Where ever there's a space and most people will use public transport.
CM: The 1200 business people coming on 25th will be predominantly arriving by bus?
KR: Or train.
CM:What is the capacity of this building.
KR: 900
CM: Why does the website advertise the business event on 25th as having over 1200 attendees?
KR Shifts weight from foot to foot. Strokes forehead with palm of hand. At which point I notice even though there are only a handful of us in the auditorium it is beginning to feel hot.
CM: Why is the sound system so massive?
KR: The building has been soundproofed and there's a limiter so no-one will be disturbed by noise.
CM: That's good to know but why do you need such an extensive sound system?
KR: It is really not a problem.
CM: But it could be and why do you need such advanced kit for speakers?
KR: There's going to be a cinema. We are looking for a film company to screen daily films, maybe two a day.
CM. Are you saying the primary use of the building is for a cinema?
KR: It's for the community to hire, there will be different things but we will supervise and make sure it is used to our guidelines.
CM: So what sort of films will you be showing and what will be the opening hours?
KR: I don't know it will depend on the film company but this building will be open every day to the public.
CM: How many large capacity events will be running?
KR: I don't know.
Local activist (LA): How much will it cost to hire hall?
KR: I don't know but prices will be commercial.
LA: So you are charging commercial prices does that mean KICC will pay full business rates to the council?
KR: Yes
LA: Where are people going to park - I don't think you have answered that question.
KR: They will use bus and train but there is plenty of parking in Crystal Palace Park.
CM: Where will the users of the park and NSC park?
KR: As there is plenty of space this won't be a problem.
CM: The event on 25th is beginning with a religious ceremony?
KR: It is just the same as if you were moving into a new house, you would have a dedication.
CM: Not led by pastors.
KR: That's how we do it. There will then be a business conference. The Chamber of Commerce support this.
CM: KICC are working with the Chamber of Commerce?
KR: Yes. Chamber members have been welcoming and asked about hall hire for vintage furniture sales and one local business is supplying catering for 25th. KICC will have a positive impact on business.
CM: The CoC is a tiny, inward looking, association that represents only a few local businesses and does not represent or have links with the wider locality.
KR The CoC recognize the business opportunities KICC will bring it's members.
CM: I suppose everyone has a price - I believe there's a story about this in the bible....

Last impression:

As there were no Trustees or leaders to speak with the information was patchy. The volunteers did their best but they were not that well informed. Those I spoke with seem to think 25 CR is the same as Fairfield Halls and can be run as such. Answers were inconsistent - different people were told different things. The capacity numbers were either 500, 700 or 900 depending on who was asked - info on website says 1200+. The use given was conferences and hall hire with mixed use and daily cinema in the main auditorium but long term view was communities change and eventually (years ahead)CP would have changed and the building would eventually become a church serving the community within which it is set.

For the time being the volunteers were clear that no religous events would take place but people would be welcome to gather to pray there. One thing's for sure there are going to have to be regular capacity events to supplement investment of approx £2.5M revenue will not be made by weekly Zumba or locals popping in for a cuppa.

KICC are either exaggerating connections with the CP CoC or else the letter ( see post 253 on Open Door thread) sent to Chamber leaders from former Chair Ray Hall claiming the PPC had campaigned against the KICC not it's intended unlawful use of 25 CR, has had some influence. Mr Hall misrepresents the Campaign and speculates about the business benefits KICC will bring to the Town Centre to appeal to members' financial needs.
  • D1 Non-residential institutions - Clinics, health centres, crèches, day nurseries, day centres, schools, art galleries (other than for sale or hire), museums, libraries, halls, places of worship, church halls, law court. Non residential education and training centres.
  • D2 Assembly and leisure - Cinemas, music and concert halls, bingo and dance halls (but not night clubs), swimming baths, skating rinks, gymnasiums or area for indoor or outdoor sports and recreations (except for motor sports, or where firearms are used).
from http://www.planningp...ts/changeofuse/

and I'll leave you with the Town & Country Planning Act: http://www.legislati...4/schedule/made

Class D1. Non-residential institutions

Any use not including a residential use —
(a)for the provision of any medical or health services except the use of premises attached to the residence of the consultant or practioner,
(b)as a crêche, day nursery or day centre,
©for the provision of education,
(d)for the display of works of art (otherwise than for sale or hire),
(e)as a museum,
(f)as a public library or public reading room,
(g)as a public hall or exhibition hall,
(h)for, or in connection with, public worship or religious instruction.
Class D2. Assembly and leisure

Use as —
(a)a cinema,
(b)a concert hall,
©a bingo hall or casino,
(d)a dance hall,
(e)a swimming bath, skating rink, gymnasium or area for other indoor or outdoor sports or recreations, not involving motorised vehicles or firearms.

#8 charlie



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:47 PM

Great account, thanks Citizen M!

I'm still shell shocked after today, but the good news is that Eastenders' DCI Jill Marsden of Walford nick is on the case - improvising her famous words: "KICC, your nicked"

Sorry, I could not resist. I am sure DCI Marsden would have said 'you're' nicked. ;-)

Edited by charlie, 11 August 2012 - 09:52 PM.

#9 Retired Member 1

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:59 PM

Cool LGBT events here we come .....
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#10 charlie



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Posted 11 August 2012 - 10:02 PM

Ha ha LSPE- so glad *your* back on the forum. And, at last I managed to talk to one of my favourite Eastenders' characters who is a campaign supporter! :)

#11 Posie



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Posted 12 August 2012 - 12:43 AM

Update from my visit yesterday, which I have to say I found frustrating as I was hoping to speak to a trustee or two, I was offered the chance to speak to a gentleman but I declined as he did not wish to disclose his name or his role within the organisation, after saying that I really wanted to speak to a trustee I was asked why and I explained that the trustees should have information for any members of the local community regarding the intentions of the kicc with regard to the use of the building. As no one could tell me when any of the trustees would be present I left the building and joined a small group of people who were listening to a member of the ppc explaining why they were handing out leaflets to the local community, some ladies who had joined the group to listen where promptly ushered inside the building by a kicc member whilst the person was speaking to them. I found this to be very rude and if I may say so very controlling. All the people I spoke to who went in to take a look around had one thing in common, they all want to see this building used for a cinema, run on a commercial basis and many stated that this would be a boost to the area.

#12 Retired Member 1

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 08:20 AM

Question: were there actually people (and I mean excluding the volunteers here) who went there to join/embrace the KICC?

Also for what has been reported they seem to be in breach of the D1/D2 use but they are either unaware of this or just bluntly ignoring it - so I can assume from now on it will be free for all? Wait for the LSPE restaurant opening soon in my lounge then! We will have films too and I promise it will help the local community ... see where I am going with this?

It seems to me that either their church in Wimbledon is too small so people from the congregation will move to CP for their mass/event or that this is just a speculative investment by a company that in many occasions has been investigated for financial wrong doings elsewhere (Wathamstow, former Olympic site etc) and religion or not I am not comfortable with this.

Also, I still struggle to understand what benefits according to our Chamber of Commerce will KICC bring to the local businesses. First and foremost define "local community" because it seems that from their advertising on the meeting on the 25th they are covering the full SE/SW of London (struggle to understand why bases in Croydon and WImbledon struggled to do this).

Most of development plans to boost local communities focuses on enhancing competitiveness, increasing sustainable growth and ensuring that growth is inclusive (we might want to explain this to them). I really struggle to see how 25CR will turn into this with the activities that they are proposing.

If for local community they mean Norwood (upper/west/south whatever) then I will be more than happy to have a look at their business strategies that would support our business (and theirs) through investments in Africa.

You see, if I were in the chamber of commerce and I had to assess a business proposal move in the area I would (1) look into their business plan assuring that objectives and actions make sense (2) assess the legal aspects of the case and assure they fulfill local regulations (3) is not detrimental for other local businesses (4) carry out a due diligence on the investors and their present/past acctivities, including the impact on local communities where they are currently operating (5) look at their financial aspects of their business model etc etc etc then ask this new business to clarify on grey areas ... if they still provide vague answers or refuse to answer at all then take further actions and really question the motifs of this investments in the area,

Maybe their are the King Midas of SMEs and we are not aware of this yet!?

... this is not trial and error ...
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#13 charlie



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Posted 12 August 2012 - 08:47 AM

I'd be interested to know who designed, printed and distributed the fltyers for the Business Seminar - I assume it was a local SME?

#14 andreas



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Posted 12 August 2012 - 08:48 AM

Really interesting posts and points. Just to add a bit from my experience, handing out the Picture Palace Campaign A5 leaflets in the morning.

First, there was very little sense of welcome at the door. Charlie and I had to show local people and KICC congregants which entrance to go through, and we did a fair amount of polite door-opening ourselves...

After about an hour, we aroused the ire of a couple of KICC minders. They interrupted a conversation we were having on the pavement with a couple of supporters. They said that what we were doing was illegal, that we had no right to hand out leaflets. We said that we had every right to do so and that if they had a problem, they should call in the law. They backed off.

Earlier, we had got into a conversation with a pleasant young couple, who had come up from Southfields, Wimbledon to visit the building and were on their way back home. They were members of the KICC congregation and had no idea that 25 Church Road was controversial or that there was a large local campaign to re-open a cinema there. We explained that it was a tricky situation, they took a couple of leaflets and we parted in a cheerful fashion. As they wandered back up Church Road towards Anerley Hill, three or four KICC minders came hurrying up and engaged them for about ten minutes outside the estate agent’s on the corner of Milestone Road.

Strange and unsettling experiences.
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#15 Billy S

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 09:35 AM

This certainly seems like the opposite of what Jesus had in mind when he threw the money changes out of the temple.


KR: It's for the community to hire, there will be different things but we will supervise and make sure it is used to our guidelines..

There goes my LGBT party!
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