New operator found for the Light House cinema

A new operator has been found to take over Wolverhampton’s former Light House cinema, council bosses have revealed.

The much-loved independent cinema closed in November 2022 after 35 years in business, with the loss of 15 jobs.

Earlier this year it was announced eight firms were clamouring to take over the business in the city’s historic Chubb Buildings.

The council’s visitor chief was unable to confirm if the successful bidder was a major cinema chain or an independent.

Councillor Bhupinder Gakhal said they had identified the operator after a “very competitive” selection process.

“We’re currently undergoing due diligence and finalising details of a long-term deal and partnership,” he said.

“This will bring the city centre Chubb Building cinema space back into vibrant use and bring tens of thousands of visitors every year to our city centre.”

The operator will be announced once the details of the deal have been completed.

The closure of the Light House was seen as a major blow to the city centre, with a petition to save it organised by the cinema’s marketing manager, Darryl Griffiths, receiving more than 7,000 signatures.

He said it had been the “creative heartbeat of the city” and had closed due to financial issues exacerbated by the pandemic and the difficulty in securing large-scale funding.

He said: “Our wonderful venue was forced to shut its doors, devastating members of staff like myself and the ever-loyal customer base that supports us.”

City of Wolverhampton Council said the venue had received about £333,000 of funding from the local authority over the past decade.

The Light House leased its box office and cafe space from Midlands Industrial Associations, the landlord of the Chubb Buildings.

It had leased the cinema space from the council rent-free for a number of years.

Please Note: Image and story taken from

credit to Eleanor Lawson – BBC News, West Midlands