HOPES are high that a film festival could be staged in Wellington next year with the town council set to be asked to provide funding later this month.

Members of the council’s town centre working group would initially like to hold a three-day festival over a weekend with the aim of making the event larger in future years.

Town councillor Mark Lithgow, of the working group, said: “We have talked to a lot of people and organisations, and each and every one of them has shown a real enthusiasm to get it off the ground.”

He said the purpose of the working group was to look at how to increase footfall in Wellington to make it a ‘destination’ town and the idea of a film festival was one of the ideas that had the most momentum.

Meetings have taken place with organisers of the Ilfracombe Film Festival and the South West Film Hub. The cinema in Ilfracombe was a large part of the North Devon town’s festival and the Wellesley in Wellington, managed by Dave Harris and also owned by Merlin Cinemas, would play a part in Wellington event.

Mr Lithgow added: “The ideas have been buzzing around including an open air cinema evening, theatre groups doing flashmob experiences, themes involving primary schools and fancy dress competitions.”

A co-ordinator who has worked on an arts festival in another part of the country is keen to take the festival forward, along with other film enthusiasts waiting in the wings.

Mr Lithgow said any cost to the town council was likely to be mitigated by grant support from other sources and ticket sales.