Welwyn Garden City Film Society
Welwyn Garden City Film Society is one of the oldest established societies in the country, having been formed in 1946. Membership tends to be in the region of 200 members, varying from year to year. Films are shown at a local authority cinema and we have the advantage of a professional projectionist.
We show twelve films each season (which runs from September to June). The aim is to show the best of British and foreign cinema, including classics. The choice of films is made partly by the committee and partly by members’ votes from a short-list. Occasionally, we have an opportunity to discuss a film with the director, and Andrea Arnold and Paul Morrison have attended our showings in the last few years.
The films we show are all commercially available and we hire them from the usual distributors. When possible, we also accompany the main feature with a short film (although these are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain).
Anyone can join and the current subscription is £30 for adults or £15 for students. This enables members to see all twelve films with no further charges. The subscription is intended to cover costs of hiring films and the venue we use.
The majority of our films are foreign. We measure the response of members to all films and there is no difference in the reaction to foreign films – basically, the showing of these is the reason people join the society.
With an ageing membership, it is always necessary to try to keep numbers up. With costs increasing, we are undertaking a drive to obtain new members. Our aims remain to broaden the availability of quality cinema and to supplement what is available at more commercial venues and on television.
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