A cinema war has broken out in Corby.
A deal has been signed for a new six-screen complex in George Street on the former Tresham College site.
At the other end of the town centre, in Elizabeth Street, work is progressing on a rival scheme for a £10m Vue cinema, at least four restaurants and shops.
Savoy Cinemas has signed with Mulberry Property Developments for the 900-seater cinema in George Street on a site which has stood empty for two years.
Building is expected to start in the next two weeks on the site which will also include three national restaurant chains.
James Collington, managing director of Savoy Cinemas, said: “The site we’ve identified in Corby presents an exciting opportunity for us to bring a high quality entertainment facility to the area for the local community to enjoy.
“Detailed planning consent is in place so the cinema will be open for operation at the start of 2015, a bumper year in cinema with the release of Avengers 2, Star Wars Episode 7 and Bond 24.”
The proposed cinema, expected to create 20 jobs, would be fitted out with the latest audio-visual technology.
Leader of Corby Council Cllr Tom Beattie said: “We are extremely pleased and excited to be moving further forward with the cinema plans.
“The people of Corby have been eagerly awaiting their very own cinema and it will be another amazing day for the regeneration of the borough when we finally open the doors to this facility and see yet another high quality building taking pride of place next to our international swimming pool and the Corby Cube.”
The new cinema will be the fourth site for the Nottingham-based independent chain.
Chairman of Mulberry Developments Robert Wilkinson said: “We’re delighted to be working with Savoy Cinemas on this exciting development.
“They have a strong reputation and we’re confident that Savoy will offer a multiplex of a quality that surpasses anything in the area, while providing value for money for the people of Corby.”
Town centre owner Helical Bar has demolished Crown House in Elizabeth Street to make way for an eight-screen Vue cinema.
The company was expecting planning permission for its scheme to be granted this month.
No-one from Helical Bar was available to comment on the Savoy cinema plans.