Reel Cinema has signed an ‘Agreement to Lease’ as anchor tenant for Pioneer Place – Burnley’s latest town centre Leisure & Retail development

Popular cinema chain, Reel Cinema, has signed as anchor tenant for the £26million Pioneer Place, leisure and retail scheme in Burnley Town Centre.

Burnley Council, owners of Pioneer Place, has today announced that the scheme is to receive a significant boost having signed agreements with Reel to bring an eight screen, 18,134 sq.ft. multi-screen cinema complex to the Pioneer Place town centre development, which will also include a restaurant plaza, shops and 125 space car park.

The Pioneer Place scheme will have space for seven restaurant units totalling 28,477 sq.ft. gross internal floor area, two retail units totalling 10,000 sq.ft. gross internal floor area, and substantial car park provision.

Burnley Council Leader, Charlie Briggs, said: “I am delighted that we have secured Reel Cinema as anchor for this exciting leisure and retail development. We have signed a deal with Reel to relocate them onsite into a new, purpose built, state-of-the-art cinema multi-screen complex.         

“It’s great that we have announced Reel as anchor for the Pioneer Place development, the signing will give other restaurant and leisure chains the confidence to invest in this exciting scheme. We’ve already had initial talks with some of the leading restaurant chains and the signing of Reel as anchor tenant should provide them with the confidence to commit.

“With the growth of the University of Central Lancashire in Burnley and the student population in Burnley set to grow ten-fold to 4,000 in the next four years, this new cinema and leisure offer will be great for the new students and a boost to Burnley’s growing university town status.

“This development will also be a major jobs boost for Burnley with the site once complete set to create over 300 jobs, as well as the many construction jobs which will be created in the development of the project.”

Charlie added: “Burnley town centre has attracted a number of new businesses in the last 18 months including Primark, Easy Coffee, Quick Crepes, Millie’s Cookies, Carnivoro Brazilian restaurant, and The Corkhouse wine shop & bar. A recent report by independent experts said Burnley is ‘punching above its weight’ in terms of maintaining and growing the number of shops in its town centre. The Pioneer Place development will further establish Burnley as the leading shopping and leisure destination in East Lancashire.”

Burnley Council’s Executive Member for Economy & Growth, Gordon Birtwistle said: “Burnley Town Centre is a thriving centre which we support with a calendar of events throughout the year which have attracted big visitor numbers and increased the footfall in the town. Burnley’s Summer Garden Party saw footfall increase by over 25%, the Burnley Literary Festival attracted over 5% increase in footfall and Burnley’s Christmas Party brought a 16.3% increase in footfall to the town centre.”

K C Suri, owner of Reel Cinema, said: “We are very pleased to announce that we have signed an agreement to open an anchor cinema at Pioneer Place.

“Burnley is a good location for us, with a thriving local economy. With its modern design, Pioneer Place will be a great addition to Burnley Town Centre attracting more visitors and creating a dynamic leisure environment.

Pioneer Place is being developed by Burnley Council in partnership with developers Maple Grove Developments.

Karen Hirst, Managing Director, Maple Grove Development said: “We are really excited to be working in partnership with Burnley Council. The scheme is a major mixed-use town centre development and the signing of Reel to Pioneer Place is a major milestone in the project. We will be delivering an eight-screen cinema, which includes one VIP screen and will also include 7 new restaurants/cafes/bars, looking to attract a number of national and regional operators as well as independent operators around a new piece of public open space. Pioneer Place will be a major addition to Burnley’s night time economy”.

Stephen Young, Executive Director of Growth, Environment, Transport and Community Services, Lancashire County Council said: “We’re really pleased to be working with Burnley Borough Council on this exciting project. It’s important that we do what we can to develop the road network to support the continued economic growth in the town and help with its ongoing transformation.”


Burnley town centre serves an immediate population of 110,000 people and a wider catchment area of 270,000 people within a 15 minute drive.

The town centre has recently undergone £4 million of improvements to the public open space including new paving, lighting, street furniture and planting which has improved the town centre environment making it attractive to businesses and visitors and encourage visitors to spend more time in the centre.

The significant development of the town centre has started to pay dividends with increased footfall figures. Burnley clearly bucks the trend of many other neighbouring towns and cities, however, we recognise we need to continue to diversify and develop further in order to prosper and to ensure we have a vibrant retail, leisure and service centre for Pennine Lancashire.

In 2018 there were 8,247,331 (over 8.2 million) visitors to Burnley town centre. That’s an average of 22,595 a day. Footfall overall has stayed pretty consistent with last year’s footfall figures although we did see an increase in the town centre in December compared with last year. We also saw increases in footfall through the summer months.

  •  300 Full Time Equivalent Jobs, plus temporary construction jobs
  • The vacancy rate in Charter Walk shopping centre  is 5%
  • The cinema chain will create  new jobs when it opens the doors to its anchor complex
  • Agents for the scheme are Brady’s and Savills
Councillor Leader Charlie Briggs, with K C Suri, Owner of Reel Cinema, and Mick Cartledge, Chief Executive Officer, picture taken at the Burnley Business Awards earlier this year