About us

Hull Independent Cinema (HIC) is a charity, run by a small team of volunteers, screening the best in art house, world, independent and short film.

When we’re not prevented from doing so by a global pandemic, we host exclusive screenings of the latest award-winning and thought provoking film from the UK, USA and around the world – films you won’t have been able to see in Hull’s mainstream cinema chains (but really wanted to!). We also incorporate the Cult Cinema Sunday and WeWatchFilms programming strands, that give audiences a chance to see cult and classic films back on the big screen, as well as running the annual Hull Film Festival. We’re working hard on growing film audiences in the city, with a long-term goal to establish a new permanent cinema for independent film.

Our history

Hull Independent Cinema (HIC) was born in 2012 when one of our founding Trustees had a dream of bringing the old Tower Cinema on Anlaby Road back into use for showing films. Although several meetings were held that year and the idea got quite a bit of media coverage the group eventually lost momentum. However, a year later HIC was reborn when WeWatchFilms, Cult Cinema Sunday and Friends of Hull Screen joined forces with the aim of securing better provision for the showing of independent, art and world cinema in Hull.

The timing was right: in November 2013 it was announced that Hull would be the UK City of Culture in 2017, offering a once-in-a-lifetime chance to take advantage of the spotlight that the city’s cultural life would be under over the coming years. Fresh impetus came from Hull City Council’s announcement that its 2014-15 Budget would see the end of funding for Hull Screen, meaning that for the first time in decades there would be no independent cinema in the city.

In April 2014 HIC became formally constituted as a Charitable Trust. We are recognised as a charity for tax purposes by HM Revenue and Customs and in 2015 secured Registered Charity status as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (Registered Charity number 1163544). In July 2015 we celebrated the first anniversary of our very first film screening and changed our name slightly, dropping ‘Project’ to reflect the fact that we are now an established film exhibitor in the city (we are still formally known as Hull Independent Cinema Project for financial, regulatory and membership purposes).

Why are we doing it?

In a nutshell, our long-term aim is to build a new venue for independent, world and art cinema in the city of Hull. We want that to be a place not just to watch films, but a social space; a place to learn more about film; a space for other forms of art to reach new audiences; and a place for local film-makers to produce and exhibit their work. We know from the hundreds of people who supported Hull Screen and who come to see films at Cult Cinema Sunday or WeWatchFilms, and who now support us at HIC, that there is a real demand for independent film in this city that just isn’t being met.

What are HIC’s plans for the future?

There’s a substantial core audience for independent film already out there but to make our long term aims achievable we need to work to grow it and to reach new audiences. To do that we’re working to establish regular programmes of film screenings in venues around the city, including community outreach programmes to attract new audiences; the annual Hull Film Festival, and an ambitious programme of film events throughout 2017; all leading up to the creation of a new cinema for the city.

Who are we?

Click on this link to Meet the Team.

How can you help?

We’ve got lots of plans about how you can get more involved in HIC, from volunteering to putting yourself forward for election to the Trustee Board, and we’ll have a lot more information on the website about that soon. In the meantime the simplest way to support us is to come to one of our events or, if you have any other ideas, please get in touch. If you would like to make a donation we would be very grateful indeed! Please use the button below, and thank you!

You can also help raise money for HIC at no cost to yourself simply by searching and shopping online.

Whenever you buy anything online – from your weekly shop to a mobile phone, from insurance to your annual holiday – you could be raising a free donation for Hull Independent Cinema by using the Easyfundraising website and app. There are nearly 3,000 retailers including Amazon, John Lewis, Aviva, thetrainline and Sainsbury’s, who will donate a percentage of the amount you spend to Hull Independent Cinema to say thank you for shopping with them.

It’s really simple, and doesn’t cost you anything.

All you have to do is:

1. Go to the HIC EasyFundraising page

2. Sign up with EasyFundraising for free

3. Get shopping – your donations will be collected by EasyFundraising and automatically sent to Hull Independent Cinema. It couldn’t be easier!

You can also use EasyFundraising’s search engine, EasySearch, when you are searching online – we get a small donation for every search you make! If everyone who receives our email bulletin made just one search a day via EasySearch to raise funds for HIC, we’d raise £120 a month! That would be enough to pay for one film licence and ensure we can take more risks with our film programme, or even add an extra screening, and still keep ticket prices low.