Stella Creasy, MP for Walthamstow

On 4th March 2011, Stella raised the issue of safeguarding listed buildings in the Commons.Watch video clip (fast forward to 41 mins 19sec).

Iain Duncan Smith, MP for Chingford

“Its time this cinema reopened. From my standpoint in Chingford this is our local cinema. With cinema tickets selling at record levels, it would be good for the community and good for Waltham Forest if it was revived”.

Sir Mick Jagger, musician

“It’s heartbreaking to hear such a beautiful, important historical building and centre of entertainment is being lost to the local community. I fully support the campaign to keep it open and provide film, music and the arts for generations to come.”

Meera Syal, actress and writer

“The Walthamstow cinema has a rare touch of glamour and it would be an absolute tragedy if the film lovers of east London were to be permanently deprived of this beautiful jewel of a cinema.”

Alan Davies, actor and comedian

“I spent many happy hours there as a child and find it extraordinary that its preservation as a cinema for local people is not a priority in the borough of Waltham Forest. With the recent demise of the dog track and now this news, it seems the protection of the area’s historic and cultural landmarks is in the wrong hands.”

Tony Robinson, actor and presenter

“At this exciting time in our history when east London is about to be revitalised, it would be crazy to turn our backs on such a magnificent venue. If not for our sakes, then for the sake of the next generation of film and music lovers, let’s ensure it is given the opportunity to reclaim its place as the hub of Walthamstow’s high-class entertainment.”

David Warner, actor

“It’s essential for our future that we do not destroy the treasures of our past. This building saw the beginning of something we now take for granted – the shared experience of cinema. Please allow it to remain for that purpose.”

Tony Benn, politician and historian

“I offer 100% support against the vandalism that is being planned.”

The Bernstein family, creators of the cinema

“This building has served as a cinema for many generations of people and is the last substantial place of entertainment in the area. The building was intended to bring the community together and to raise local access to culture and entertainment. It was always meant to be somewhere open to everyone. If it becomes a church then clearly that purpose is completely lost. It would be very sad for Waltham Forest if such a long and important tradition now falls by the wayside through the outcome of a planning decision. It was designed by some of the great architects and designers of their generation and forms part of the heritage of the great picture palaces”. 

Griff Rhys Jones

“We will realise that we have lost something wonderful and magical if this cinema goes and it will only slip away if we don’t raise our voices to stop that happening. I am an Epping boy and Walthamstow was my stomping ground. This is a great place and a great place to watch films. These grand cinemas are becoming rarer. They were the cathedrals of their age and still have a role to play”.

Writer and philosopher Alain de Botton

“The EMD Cinema was built to promote happiness, culture and entertainment for the benefit of the whole community. I fully support the (McGuffin) campaign to save the cinema and share their wish to see it reopened as a flagship arts venue for east London”.

David Parfitt – chairman of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA)

“The cinema should be at the heart of the community,” he said. “Film is open to all regardless of religion or ethnicity and seeing a great film in a great cinema is one of the best community experiences you can have. Don’t let another great picture palace die”.


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