THE new owner of an independent cinema has revealed film fans need to 'use it or lose it' if they wish to see it continue long-term.

This comes after Lara Hewitt, who opened the Palace Cinema in Longridge at the end of May, said only eight viewers visited the screens in Market Place over the weekend.

The 36-year-old said the cinema has had a makeover, with the introduction of a cafe and showing more than one film a day.

The film-maker, from Longridge, said she believes the unexpected good weather has led to a lack of customers in the first few weeks.

She said: "It wasn't ideal only having 10 customers in over the weekend, however we are just getting going and we need to reach out to lots of people.

"I aim to run this as a full business and show films multiple times a day, as well as show classic films, children's films, arts films and big blockbusters.

"I would say it is a case of use it or lose it, however I don't have any plans to close, we are just getting going.

"Before we took it over it showed one film per day at 5.30pm.

"I want to turn it into an arts place for everyone to visit throughout the day and bring a cafe so people can come down and have a brew or a glass of beer and chat.

"Having a cinema like this is great, we still have the national anthem and we still serve tea in china cups."

The cinema was taken over by Lara in January this year.

It also features a children's club on a Saturday and Sunday morning where youngsters can watch a film and have a milkshake for £3.50.

It is showing a variety of films including A Fistful of Dollars, Mean Girls, Sherlock Gnomes and Solo: A Star Wars Story.

Lara said: "With the cinema I want to bring an opportunity to give people in Blackburn and Preston something you would only find in the bigger cities.

"We have plans to do lots of marketing during the summer.

"I want to make this a full-time arts place for Longridge and the Ribble Valley.

"We do not have the scale of a Vue or an Odeon, we are a little place.

"I hope to see lots of people come down, even if they don't fancy watching a film they a can come in for a drink and say hello."