One of the world’s 'smallest’ cinema is now home to a ticketing software company following a deal overseen by Innes England
Nottingham-based Savoy Systems are now the proud owners of 25 Broad Street, a unique building that includes a 663 sq ft one-screen cinema - known to locals as Screen 22, and before that The Screen Room.
Originally founded to support Savoy Cinema, Savoy Systems now manage and create ticketing software for 110 independent venues across the UK, including The Lace Market Theatre in Nottingham, Music for Everyone, and Nottingham Arts Theatre. The company, which was set up in 2006, was previously based in Cumberland House, Park Row in Nottingham. Thanks to continued growth, the firm needed to expand and was looking to create a unique head office to showcase its software.
“We had always talked about operating our own cinema as a side-business alongside our software,” says Patrick Hort, managing director at Savoy Systems. “But we never imagined finding something small or unusual enough to make that dream come true. When we saw Screen 22 was on the market, we couldn’t believe it – and after a few viewings and conversations we decided to take the plunge.
“Many of our team are from Nottingham and, although I have lived in London for many years, I knew of Screen 22 and its legendary status of being a tiny, independent cinema. Our HQ has always been in the city, and it's great to now have a space where we can grow and showcase our software.
“We started out in 2006 to sell and support our box office system Oscar; now we have over 100 customers all over the UK. Our ticketing business has continued to go from strength to strength and 25 Broad Street will really help us to expand the business in the future.”
One of Nottingham's hidden gems
Screen 22 was once the holder of a Guinness World Record for being the smallest cinema in existence. One of Nottingham’s hidden gems, the venue gets its name from only having 22 seats and will continue as a private cinema managed by Savoy Systems.
Ben Taylor, retail director at Innes England, said: “Following the closure of Screen 22, we were asked to market the property for either lease or purchase. We immediately received lots of interest both from businesses wanting to continue running the cinema, as well as new independent cafés and bars – all looking for a property in the ever-popular Hockley area of Nottingham.
“We received multiple bids, but were delighted to see Savoy Systems take ownership of the property. Screen 22 is an iconic building, and I am pleased the cinema will remain in use, and that the building will now be home to a thriving Nottingham-bred business.”
Savoy Systems is currently using the office space as its HQ, and will continue to let the two residential flats which form part of the building to private tenants.
Patrick added: “25 Broad Street is a unique property and I am really excited to put our stamp on it and remind people of its cultural importance. We want to make the cinema a community hub, where we will not only offer private rentals, but also work to support community groups who may want a space like this to screen their own videos, or maybe even hold events.”