The Arcadia public inquiry closed on Thursday 9 July having run for three weeks. The Planning Inspectorate has indicated that the final decision, to be taken by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, John Denham, is due on or before 7 December (although this timetable is not set in stone).
A decision is expected shortly from the Mayor on Dickens Yard, behind the Town Hall. The decision has been held up for some months over issues relating to on-site renewable energy generation but it is believed that these are close to being resolved. Demolition of the Annex office block is expected to start shortly and be completed before the end of the year.
The former Empire Cinema site remains cleared except for the facade with its supporting scaffolding. According to Empire Cinemas, start on work on the new 16 screen cinema complex has been delayed because of internal design changes caused by the need to move to digital screening. A revised planning application is due to be lodged in the autumn. No start date for work has been given.