In one of the few venues to show a live broadcast of The Queen’s funeral in Glasgow, the cinema had a curious turnout.
The Queen’s funeral on Monday was declared a bank holiday with many shops and venues choosing to close for the day.
While the live broadcast of the military procession and funeral was free on all major UK news networks, select Vue Cinemas announced they would broadcast the state occasion for free for those who wanted to watch in a public setting.
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The two Vue Cinemas in the city at the St Enoch shopping centre and at Glasgow Fort sold out shortly after the screenings were announced.
As a city without an official outdoor screening planned, I went to The Vue at the St Enoch Centre and was surprised by the audience turnout.
The screenings started at 10am and were projected to run for approximately three hours. Regular concession items were not available, but staff members were present to offer free water, tea, and coffee to customers.
At 10.15am the cinema, like the shopping centre surrounding it, was eerily silent. By 11am the trickle of viewers into the screening room was barely more than a dozen.
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Watching such an arcane ceremony in the cinema was a great experience, but the empty seats took away from the suggestion of sharing the moment with other community members.
At approximately 11.55am, scenes of the national moment of silence were broadcast from cities across the UK. In the cinema, some viewers looked up from their phones.
Eyes in the cinema stayed dry and people slowly trickled out just as they had come in, a testament to the casual indifference the state funeral evoked across Glasgow.