Drive-in cinema heading to West Acre theatre ground

A trial of the Westacre Theatre drive-in cinema screen.

A trial of the Westacre Theatre drive-in cinema screen. - Credit: Matt Grist

A Norfolk theatre is offering their take on an American tradition as they finally welcome back guests.

Westacre Theatre near Swaffham will begin their first-ever drive-in cinema season, starting on May 21 as they move past the pandemic.

Operating from a converted chapel in the village, 2020 was supposed to be their biggest year yet, as they would have been celebrating the 30th anniversary of their first summer production.

Staff at West Acre Theatre.

Staff at West Acre Theatre. - Credit: West Acre Theatre

Their shows and performances have been taking place since 1990, attracting audiences from all over East Anglia and beyond with most playing to capacity houses.

In their flexible studio space, they can seat up to 80 people, and the theatre offers a year-round programme of in-house productions, visiting companies, concerts, workshops, cinema screenings and many other events.


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They say there will now be a range of events on offer outdoors over the coming months, however, their first one will keep people inside their cars overlooking the landscaped lagoon.

A trial of the Westacre Theatre drive-in cinema screen.

A trial of the Westacre Theatre drive-in cinema screen. - Credit: Matt Grist

The first event of 2021 is a new venture for Westacre, as they host a drive-in cinema.

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The four very diverse screenings were selected after an audience survey and they hope to offer something for everyone.

They start with Robert Zemeckis’s Back to the Future, a week later they return with British comedy-drama Misbehaviour. The following weekend will finish with a double bill, with June 4 showing Guy Ritchie’s The Gentlemen. Then finishing off with a cult classic, The Greatest Showman on June 5.

Westacre Theatre near Swaffham will host its first-ever drive-in cinema.

Westacre Theatre near Swaffham will host its first-ever drive-in cinema. - Credit: Debbie Harris

Tickets are charged per car and on your arrival, you will be given a Bluetooth speaker which ensures that you can adjust the volume to your taste from the privacy, security and comfort of your own vehicle.

Refreshments on offer include hot dogs and alcoholic drinks from their license bars and brought straight to you in your car.

Films on the specially installed screen begin 7:30pm and you can stay on until 11pm.

The theatre was meant to celebrate their 30th-anniversary last year, but are hoping to bounce back this year.

The theatre was meant to celebrate their 30th-anniversary last year, but are hoping to bounce back this year. - Credit: West Acre Theatre

The theatre’s toilets are also operational, so there is everything you could possibly want in a government-approved covid-secure night out.

You can book tickets for your car on their website.

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