AN EXTRA push has been made to raise more funds for vital renovations to a listed cinema after it suffered delays.

The Electric Palace in King’s Quay Street, Harwich, closed in May for the £750,000 restoration project, which were expected to take between six and nine months.

Essential conservation work was needed to strengthen the ceiling of the iconic early cinema to prevent it from the possibility of collapse.

Members of the trust, which runs the 106-year-old building, said the hessian in the plaster had just passed the average lifespan and had started to move, prompting concerns.

Plans were also in place to redecorate the auditorium, refurbish the seats and toilets, replace electrical switchgear, enlarge the stage and enhance security.

But work has suffered months of delays.

Despite being expected to finish at the end of this year, it will now not be completed until June.

Some of the work has also had to halt due to funding shortages.

Colin Crawford, trustee, said: “We’ve had to take one or two things out of the project so we keep costs on the original budget. We haven’t got any spare.

“But as we go on we sometimes find we have favourable costs and in that case we can put some of those things back on.

“We can’t do the new seating at the moment or refurbish the seating we have, but we are going to review that.”

To help raise more funds and give residents a cinema experience again, the palace has announced a series of five film shows at the 1912 Centre from January 4.

It is then hoped further screenings can be held at the Cow Lane venue throughout the rest of January.

Mr Crawford said: “We are going to run some extra films in the 1912 Centre next door.

“It’s quite a small place so we are limited with tickets.

“If we get some money from these films, any surplus we get we will put back to the project. That would be very welcome.

“Having the films keeps it all going and people don’t forget about us.

“We were hoping to be open.

“We were delayed starting but now it’s started it’s going on time. They have just finished installing the temporary roof on the top.

“We are looking to reopen in mid June.”

Donations for the work, which needed the trust to stump up about £60,000 towards the work, is still open.

To donate use sort code 40-19-43 and account number 81379224 and reference HEPT Roof Appeal.