Article by Guy bell: A sold-out cinema show gave children with learning difficulties a chance to take in a film on Billericay's own big screen.
Youngsters supported by Brighter Opportunities Through Supported Play (BOSP) were invited for a free morning of movies, popcorn and colouring.
Paddington Bear kept parents, carers and children engaged on Sunday after discussions between the cinema and charity.
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Billericay Cine chairman Adam Adshead"]We were all looking forward to it but had no idea what it was going to be like. Some of our volunteers went away saying it was the best show we have ever done because so many people enjoyed it. Everything we had done before was reinvesting the money but this time was very special because it was purely not for profit. We met Jodie, who is a key player in BOSP, when she came to one of our shows as a host charity group. We were thinking maybe we could do a show for them if we could find someone to fund it.[/quote]
The Billericay Lions Club funded the show, including refreshments.
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Mr Ashead"]It all came together with all three groups. Parents, carers and kids came in and were able to sit down and watch a film for free. For some of them it was the first time they have been to a cinema. BOSP picked Paddington because the children may react differently to certain lighting in other films but they were so well behaved. They liked the bean bags because I think it was comfortable for them and it was more like being at home. They could behave exactly how they wanted to and they could sing along or dance along if they wanted. Nobody was there judging them and one or two people got quite emotional."
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Debbie Dennis, office manager at BOSP"]It was such a successful day and we have had lots of positive feedback from parents because it was so relaxed. They said it was nice to have an accepting environment where the other parents knew what to expect and one parent even said it was nice sitting down with a coffee in a proper cup and saucer. Paddington was such a good film and you just can't fault anything the cinema group do. We were all made to feel so welcome.[/quote]
Article and images by Guy Bell, Ongar Gazette