Cinemas hit by freezing weather

The cold snap is expected to reduce cinema ticket sales by a quarter this month, losing the industry up to £24m. December is typically a big month, and with films such as the Christina Aguilera flick Burlesque, above, on release, cinema owners had high hopes for this year.

But Phil Clapp, chief executive of the Cinema Exhibitors' Association, warned that ticket sales of could fall to 12 million from 16.2 million last December: "The weather has had a significant impact." Rob Arthur, managing director of Apollo Cinemas, said that there is normally a pick-up from Boxing Day.

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