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Seating capacity decreases as spectators become bigger [infographic]

17 November, 2014

Infographic showing the Malvern Cinema seating capacity before and after refurbishment

Click on the image to enlarge it

A week ago (Monday, 10 November 2014) in the Telegraph’s printed edition (page 9) there was a text-only article about the refurbishment of Malvern cinema in Worcestershire (UK). Inspired by its content and after further research we present it here as an infographic with additional content from other sources.

Malvern Cinema opened in 1923 (Malvin Picture House). By 1964 the cinema was closed and a year later it was “extensively refurbished”.

Earlier this November it was refurbished again and its old 17-inch-wide seats were replaced for 21-inch-wide ones. As a result the cinema’s seating capacity was reduced from 384 seats to 303; that’s more than a 20% reduction. The cinema re-opened on Thursday, 13 November 2014.

The new seats come in three types: standard (16 seats for each stalls’ row), premium (15 seats for each row) and double. All of the seats now have cup holders.

The new seating cost £50,000 raised exclusively from donations. The old seats were sold out for £30 per pair in 24 hours after going on sale.

One of the main reasons of the new seating was comfort. The old seats were too narrow for present-day spectators. Public Health England estimates that in England, in 2012, two in three men were either overweight or obese. Obesity in adults rose from 15% in 1993 to 25% in 2012.

Malvern Theatres Website History
Malvern Theatres Facebook Page
Daily Mail Online Worcestershire’s Malvern Cinema to replace seats because of our expanding bottoms
The Daily Telegraph, Print Edition, 10 November 2014, p.9 “Big bottoms force cinema to change seats”
Malvern Gazette Ninety one-year-old venue will be sitting pretty after refurbishment
Public Health England Weight & Obesity data factsheets

If you found this post interesting, why not have a look at our posts about:
Alcohol-related deaths in England
We Are What We Eat: an infographic
The Food Cube (as the new Food Pyramid)
3 Comments leave one →
  1. Beatrice permalink
    23 November, 2014 8:55 am

    Fascinating! So it means that obesity provides business opportunity to come up with bigger seats! This way though less people can be seated and less money can go into box office. Unless they rise the ticket prices (which I’m sure they might have done) because ‘they’ would not do things for the benefit of people only. So, for us women bigger seats mean that we don’t have to put our handbag on the floor but can still fit it within the seat:-)))


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