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Woods and Timberlake forced to amend bar plan

The historic cinema and Tiger Woods

Public outrage has forced golfer Tiger Woods and singer Justin Timberlake to amend their plan to convert a 1930s cinema in St Andrews into a sports bar.

The pair want to base want to open a version of their New York gastropub T-Squared Social in the Fife town, the home of golf and one of Scotland’s top tourist destinations.

However, their hopes of repurposing the New Picture House on North Street, close to the Old Course, sparked an angry reaction from the community.

The celebrity pair’s company Nexus Luxury Collection has now reached a compromise with Fife council that will see two of the three screens retained rather than just one. The main auditorium will also be kept intact.

There will be some changes as Woods and Timberlake still want to deliver a “family-friendly, blended cinema, dining and entertainment offering”.

It has also been accepted that the plan will help save the 90-year-old cinema which was in danger of closing.

David Morris, the managing director, said: “This intervention by T-Squared not only allows a cinema offering to be retained for the town, but indeed the building itself.

“This was not a decision we took lightly, and we felt that this was the right company to preserve what we have built up over almost 100 years.”

The character of the auditorium is also being protected with existing ceiling, walls and stage features retained. Responding to the public the much-loved upper level of the cinema will be staying as it is today, with over 300 seats retained in the venue for cinema goers.

A planning application will be submitted to Fife council.

Christopher Anand, managing partner for T-Squared Social, said the company will ensure the cinema remains in the town “for generations to come”. The revamped venue will employ 40 to 50 staff, an increase on the current 10, he said.

Woods won the Open championship on the Old Course in 2000 and 2005. “I’ve been fortunate to enjoy many special moments here,” he said. “We wanted to add to the local community and be a welcoming place for those living in St Andrews and for visitors alike.”

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