Denby Visits: The Ritz Cinema

This week marks the 10th anniversary of The Ritz cinema in Belper, Derbyshire. A small and stylish cinema, The Ritz offers a unique film experience with exquisite décor and quality food and drink.

First opened in 1936, The Ritz was originally a musical hall, juvenile court as well as a cinema. Officially closed in 1991 until reopening in 2006, The Ritz is a building with an abundance of history. Now a family-run business, the cinema has recently undergone a refurbishment to add to the character of the building. However, the real refurbishment took place back in 2006 when the owners first purchased the cinema; the owner Amanda, tells of the feeling that “the doors had literally just been closed on it and there were old sweet wrappers and pop-cans inside!”.

After time spent planning, they acquired a grant and were able to begin the regeneration of the cinema. The cinema was gutted, ensuring that any architectural details including the balustrade and art deco ceiling were maintained. The legroom was doubled, luxury seats were installed and a foyer seating area and bar was created.

The Ritz is reminiscent of traditional cinema with a welcoming foyer, large, padded seating, curtains that are pulled back when the film begins and obliging ushers on hand to show you to your seats. Amanda says “We always wanted The Ritz to be reflective of going to the cinema back in its heyday, when cinema was special. We hope that we show films how film-makers want their films to be seen and that we create the 'magic' of cinema”.

As part of the most recent refurbishment, The Ritz has also introduced our Halo tableware range to serve their drinks and snacks. Indulgent hot chocolates and coffees are presented in large Halo mugs, giving a sense of warmth and cosiness. The two-tone effect evident on Halo greatly complements the colour scheme of the cinema with its deep purple tones. Offering a special selection of homemade cakes, sweets, chocolate, nuts and of course, popcorn, visitors can enjoy something to eat, on plates produced locally. Since reopening, Amanda says that “The mugs are the one thing that have been most commented on!”, mainly due to their generous size and beautiful colour and pattern.

In celebration of The Ritz’s 10-year anniversary, they are holding a number of exciting events including The Ritzy Awards in aid of UNICEF, the Belper Players performing a play by George Gunby, a performance from the Belper Wind Band, a satellite performance of Andre Rieu at Christmas, Andy Minion and John Hodson will be hosting a Christmas Cavalcade at the café No 28 and some member screenings.

Find more information on The Ritz here. If you are interested in booking to see a film at The Ritz, contact them on 01773 822224 from 4pm every day.
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