Empire Cinemas named as Queensgate anchor for £60m Queensgate extension

Lendlease and Invesco Real Estate have announced that Empire Cinemas is to anchor the £60m extension of Queensgate, with the leading entertainment brand opening a ten-screen cinema, complete with IMAX® and Empire’s own large format IMPACT® screens.  The new cinema will boast the biggest screens, ultimate sound, a choice of luxury seating, including ‘comfort boosting’ double sofas or individual electric recliners.  The ultimate way to enjoy blockbuster movies

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Empire Cinemas currently operates 129 Screens across 14 cinemas in the UK and the company’s vision is to provide a memorable cinema experience. 

Empire Cinemas’ cater for all; from Empire JNRS, which offers families the chance to see a family favourite every weekend for pocket money prices; to Empire Seniors, where the over 60s can watch a selection of the best recent and classic films every Wednesday, including tea or coffee and a biscuit.  Empire Cinemas also welcome parents with babies through their Empire Parent & Baby screenings, providing a relaxing environment for parents/guardians to enjoy the latest releases with the lights up and sound down.

In addition to the very latest film releases, there will also be a variety of Empire Extra screenings, where customers can experience big stage productions and events on the big screen from the comfort of their local cinema - be it theatre, opera, ballet, music or sport, customers can sit back and enjoy the experience in high definition, where you're always guaranteed the best seat in the house at a fraction of the theatre ticket price.

The 77,000 sq ft extension of Queensgate will be carried out in partnership with John Lewis, which will be investing in its store as part of the proposals to create a new and enhanced retail layout, showcasing its latest shop design.  The extension will include new leisure space and there is already strong demand from a number of leading restaurant and leisure operators to take space.  It will also create 200 jobs once complete, adding ten per cent to the total number of people employed by Queensgate.

In addition to signing Empire, River Island is upsizing into a new 11,600 sq ft store at Queensgate.  River Island joins Joules in utilising part of the former BHS.

Commenting on the news, Guy Thomas, Head of Retail at Lendlease, said: “This is an exciting milestone for Queensgate.  The extension will cement the centre’s appeal as a retail and leisure destination on a regional basis by adding a significant leisure component and creating new stores that meet modern retailer requirements.   Empire Cinemas is the perfect partner and will bring to Peterborough city centre a first-class cinema experience.”

Justin Ribbons, Chief Executive of Empire Cinemas, added: “We are very delighted to be bringing our memorable cinema experience to Peterborough.  This will be our first cinema in the region, so will serve as a flagship for the community, providing visitors with the best quality, screens, seating and sound.”

In the last 12 months, Queensgate has welcomed a string of new store signings and upsizes including Joules, Smiggle, Pandora, New Look, Ann Summers, Yankee Candle and Sharps Bedrooms.  At the end of last year, Queensgate also unveiled a stunning new £8 million interior mall refurbishment, creating a brighter more contemporary shopping environment for visitors.

CBRE and Time Retail Partners represented Queensgate.  Empire dealt direct and HDH acted for River Island.





Queensgate Shopping Centre was opened on March 9 1982 by Queen Beatrice of the Netherlands.

Located in the heart of Peterborough, it holds over 90 retail outlets that attract approximately 16 million people each year from local and regional areas.

Its anchor stores are John Lewis and Primark.  Other retailers include Tiger, Lakeland, M&S, Superdry, Ernest Jones, Fleur, H Samuel, Clinton Cards, Next, Topshop, Topman, Thomas Cook, Boots, McDonalds, Carluccio’s and handmade burger Co.  Following its refurbishment in 2015, the Westgate Arcade has increased occupancy, attracting a host of independent retailers and businesses to the scheme.

Queensgate Shopping Centre was bought by a fund managed by Invesco Real Estate and is managed by Lend Lease with Jones Lang LaSalle acting as property managers.






About Empire Cinemas
Empire Cinemas is the largest independently-owned cinema chain in the UK. Currently operating 129 screens in 14 cinemas across the United Kingdom, Empire Cinemas screens everything from mainstream blockbusters to art-house classics in quality cinemas, staffed by individuals who are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about film.

In 2017, Empire Cinema’s opened its doors to 4.5 million customers, showing over 400 different movies across its screens.  March 2017 saw the opening of a brand new 14 Screen Complex at the Buttermarket in Ipswich.  February 2018 marked the opening of our Sutton Cinema (after a £5million re-build project) as a 10 Screen complex including 2 IMPACT® Screens and a 30 seat D-Box screen.

Other new site developments recently confirmed/announced include The Dolphin Centre in Poole and The Seaway Leisure Development in Southend. 

Empire Cinemas is also the home of alternative content through their Empire Extra programme, screening the latest productions from the worldly renowned Royal Opera House, National Theatre Live and English National Opera straight to cinemagoers.

The community is at the core of Empire Cinemas, with schemes including Meerkat Movies, Parent and Baby, Empire Jnrs and Empire Seniors helping to give every customer a unique cinema experience.

For further information on Empire Cinemas please contact House PR: empire@housepr.com / 020 7291 3000