Access to Scotland’s only mobile cinema could end next year if the service fails to acquire funding for a new custom vehicle.
The Screen Machine, which travels across the West Coast, including the Highlands and Islands and Argyll, could be off the road by April 2024.
After several breakdowns, the custom-built vehicle was replaced by a French-leased truck whose lease expires in April.
Following this, the Screen Machine’s future looks in doubt, unless the group can secure funding from the Scottish Government for a new vehicle.
The original vehicle had toured Scotland for 17 years before being laid up back in 2015. The service has run for around 25 years.
It offered an air-conditioned 80-seat cinema service, bringing the big screen to rural communities.
The group estimates a brand-new Screen Machine will cost around £1.4m and wants the Scottish Government to contribute 50% of the cost.
With no funding, the service could be stopped
Speaking to BBC’s Good Morning Scotland, Fiona Fowler of Regional Screen Scotland said island communities were already impacted due to the vehicle change.
She said: “We are unable to visit seven islands that we would normally get to, so customers on Cumbrae and Jura are already feeling the disappointment of not being able to visit the Screen Machine.
“With nothing else in the pipeline, we will be faced with winding the service down.”
Bafta-winning film and TV director Robin Haig grew up with the service while living in Dornie in the Highlands.
She told the BBC: “Not having the Screen Machine would be like not having your loved family member come to visit.
“It provides so much warmth and spirit and gives you the chance to laugh and cry together.”
Fans and customers of the Screen Machine are being asked to write to their local MPs and MSPs to help draw attention to the need for the mobile cinema service to continue.