A BELOVED cinema has increased its ticket prices for the first time in five years.

Century Cinema announced on Thursday it is increasing its prices by up to 55 per cent from Friday.

In a statement shared on social media, the cinema said its parent company, Picturedrome Cinemas, is “conscious of the importance of always keeping our prices as low as we can” but has had to increase prices because of a “significant increase” in overheads.

“The money you pay on a ticket is divided between Film Distribution, who make the phenomenal films we show, VAT, and ourselves on all associated running costs in maintaining the cinemas,” it said.

The statement added: “We fully understand this will not be the news you wish to hear, but we can assure you all as our loyal customers that we will only ever increase our prices on a needs must to keep the wonder of cinema on your local high streets.”

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Ticket prices at the cinema in Pier Avenue, Clacton, have not been increased since February 2019, while its lowest priced £3.50 tickets have been unchanged for 17 years.

From Friday, tickets bought in person will cost £5, while tickets sold online will cost £5.45.

Despite the increase, the cinema remains cheaper than many of its competitors, with an adult ticket bought online at Odeon in Colchester city centre costing £14.49.