Monday, 30 May 2011

Cinematic horror special

I generally insist that people have a right to do what they want, providing they leave others to go about their own business too, but there are limits. And I have to report a case which exceeds them.
Because Living Hell (or 'Living Hope Community Church', to give them their official title) have a planning application in (number 11/00621/B) to set up another permanent base in the former gym by Douglas’s Palace Cinema.
Apparently they currently run their Sunday freak show in the Shearwater Suite. Now they want to start holding it in the Palace Cinema instead, setting the gym aside for a separate child abuse session.
I have to protest.
It is not just that parents in the cinema, eyes swivelling and mouths frothing as the lunatic at the front gets into his stride, will not hear their offspring screaming to get out from the gym. It is also a public health issue.
Years ago I worked in several large Victorian psychiatric hospitals, so I know what happens when largish groups of mentally disturbed people get over-excited. Apart from the obvious danger of physical harm to each other as they thrash about (though as the Living Hell acolytes are, in law at least, consenting adults that is their business) they lose control of their bodily functions too.
There is no way to put this politely. Places where this happens regularly develop stains and odours which no amount of bleach and hard scrubbing ever remove.
Adults may decide to put up with this if the film is good enough and the prices are low (neither, admittedly, seem likely at a Manx cinema). But the Palace Cinema is also a place where kids are taken to be entertained.
Any parent will have difficulties explaining to puzzled tinies why the place stinks like a blocked toilet and the floor appears to be stained with faecal matter. And sane or responsible ones would never allow the lights of their lives in such a cess pit in the first place.

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