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Kensington Odeon campaigners are silverscreen superheroes

Benedict Cumberbatch is no stranger to victory right now, as the red carpet becomes his second home for awards season. But as well as winning plaudits for his turn as Alan Turing, he – along with a host of other high profile and local campaigners – has just bagged a different kind of triumph.

The Sherlock actor, alongside Richard Curtis, John Hurt and Ian Holm, joined the 20,000-strong crusaders against the plan to develop the Kensington Odeon into luxury flats. Property firm, Minerva, which had designs to transform the 1,300-seat monument to Art Deco into 43 luxury apartments, this week suffered a set back when RBKC councillors threw out the application in a surprise move. Under Minerva’s auspices, two screens would be preserved, though access via the front of the building would be reserved for residents only.

Caroline McLean, who leads the Save the Kensington Odeon campaign, said: ‘I hope that they will go back to the drawing board and come back with a scheme that gives us the cinema we deserve, with the facade for all, and the affordable housing we need.’

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