Society delight at making a return to its reel home

The Island cinema, St Annes
The Island cinema, St Annes
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Fylde Film Society is returning to its roots.

From the start of its new season on Monday – the Society’s 68th – the venue will be The Island Cinema, St Annes, with the first film to be screened the Martin Luther King epic Selma.

The Society dates back to 1948 when, with the sponsorship of the Royal Air Forces Association, the then Lytham St Annes Film Society screened its first film, Mr Deeds Goes to Town, using a 16mm projector at Ansdell Institute.

By 1951 it was presenting a week-long Festival of British Films and in 1953 a Coronation Film Festival in addition to its season of films.

Venues have varied over the years to include the St Annes College of Further Education, the Assembly Rooms in Lytham and from 2009 up to the end of last season, the Odeon in Blackpool, with the latter move prompting a change to the name Fylde Film Society as membership numbered nearly 90.

Simon Williams, chairman of the Society, said: “It is great to be going back to south Fylde.

“We pride ourselves on the best in contemporary world cinema, quite often only available in major cities, in a friendly and relaxed environment and new members are welcome.

“Anyone who fancies joining us should just turn up at our launch night at the The Island on Monday from 7pm, when there will be a drinks reception with the film being screened at 8.25pm to allow time for registration.”

Cheryl-Lynne Mansell, manager at The Island, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Fylde Film Society to The Island and back to south Fylde.

“The Society has a long history and is very proud of its south Fylde roots - this is the area in which it belongs, isn’t it?”

Selma, which starts the Society season, is based on the 1965 Selma to Montgomery voting rights marches and stars actors David Oyelowo as King, Tom Wilkinson as President Lyndon B Johnson. It is also the matinee show at The Island next Wednesday afternoon at 2pm

Society screenings are every other Monday and the provisional list of films for the new season’s first half, running until December, are at www.fyldefilmsociety.co.uk.