Experiencing movie magic in the open air

Claire Hunt, of the Village Screen Pop-Up Cinema
Claire Hunt, of the Village Screen Pop-Up Cinema
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Film screenings are heading to some unusual venues in Sheffield and the Peak District. The new Village Screen Pop-Up Cinema promises screenings of classic movies in urban and rural locations.

Audiences will view the films while wearing headphones and lounging on vintage deckchairs, as well as enjoying food and soft drinks.

The events will begin next Thursday, Friday and Saturday with screenings of The Full Monty, Back to the Future and Dirty Dancing on the roof of the Q-Park car park in Castlegate.

Then, on October 2 and 3, The Little Mermaid and Titanic will make for a suitably aquatic-themed programme at the outdoor pool in Hathersage – where a choice of watching from the poolside, or while floating in dinghies on the water, will be on offer.

The outdoor cinema has been launched by Claire Hunt as part of her new company, Village Green Events.

Claire, aged 29, grew up in Millhouses, and recently moved back to Sheffield from London, where she worked first as a lawyer, and then for the Science Museum’s corporate sponsorship team. Village Green comes under the umbrella of her family’s business, the Very Creative Group.

A scene from The Full Monty

A scene from The Full Monty

“I went to outdoor screenings in London and loved them,” she said.

“I remember thinking ‘I’d love to do this in Sheffield’.”

Claire said the Village Screen offers more than the traditional cinema experience.

“Normally you file in and file out again, and the whole purpose of going is to watch the film. This is about being in an interesting environment, eating some nice food, having a milkshake and chilling out.

Film screenings are happening on the roof of the Q-Park car park on Castlegate in Sheffield city centre

Film screenings are happening on the roof of the Q-Park car park on Castlegate in Sheffield city centre

“It’s fun to watch a film in a place which isn’t supposed to be used as a cinema. People usually get quite excited about it and you usually get quite sociable people attending.

“Also it will be nice at Q-Park to see the Park Hill flats and all the lights of the city. And lots of the films we are showing are films from my childhood, which I grew up with and other people will have too.”

A sometimes tricky task can be securing the rights to particular films.

“At Hathersage we were hoping to show Jaws but Steven Spielberg owns the rights and they’re difficult to get,” said Claire.

Dirty Dancing''Patrick Swayze & Jennifer Grey'�Vestron Pictures Ltd.

Dirty Dancing''Patrick Swayze & Jennifer Grey'�Vestron Pictures Ltd.

“You have to pay quite a bit of money. A lot of the ticket sales from a film go on the licence. I learned this quite quickly!”

Audience members can arrive from 7pm and screenings will start at 8.30pm. Cow Boys Burgers will be serving food and drink and there are also plans for an ice cream stall.

“There will be a chance at the beginning for people to arrive early and mingle and soak up the atmosphere,” Claire added.

Meanwhile private screenings for companies are being arranged and Claire is scouting around for more novel locations ahead of more events in the near future.

“From my point of view, I like more unique experiences – I’m always looking for different things to do,” she said.

“I’d quite like to do something in the woods but I haven’t started looking into that.

“We’re hoping to do a bigger programme starting from May onwards.”

* Tickets for the Q-Park events are priced £13.50. Visit the website The Village Green Events for details and to book.