Brampton is a small market town in Cumbria, near Hadrian's Wall and services the surrounding rural district.
In the summer of 2007, volunteers at Brampton Community Centre initiated research, which identified a local community need for some kind of club or society, designed to bring movies to the town, which is some 9 miles from the nearest cinema. Brampton Parish Council generously provided £250, thus allowing a Steering Group to pursue the idea.
On 29 November 2007, an inaugural meeting was held at Brampton Community Centre, which included a screening of the comedy film Stranger Than Fiction. The audience agreed to formulate the club. More than 50 people joined that evening and voted in a committee.
A selection sub-committee now identifies a programme of films for each half year, although other films, over and above the published programme may be shown at intervals. Pamphlets and flyers are published and circulated in Brampton and the surrounding villages, advertising the films and inviting further membership.
The evident public enthusiasm for the project led the Brampton and District Neighbourhood Forum to make a grant of £500 towards running costs.
By August 2008, the club had grown to more than 165 members, with people coming mainly from the Brampton area but with some from as far off as Haltwhistle, Gretna and even Keswick. Membership levels are now maintained at around 200 people annually.
The committee endeavours to bring a variety of films to its members, who are frequently canvassed for ideas as to how their club should progress.
The club exists to work as a film society screening British and world cinema movies, whilst encouraging interest in films within the community.
The club normally allows the admittance of non-members, who pay a higher admittance fee.
The club will facilitate events for other groups e.g. charities. A minimum standard fee is chargeable but profits from such events may be donated to the group involved at the discretion of the committee.
In 2008 the club received a grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Fund; this money allowed the club to purchase its own sound and projection equipment giving it independence and the ability to operate at different locations if necessary. In 2011 a further £5,000 was raised with the aid of various funding groups for the purchased of a large, motorised screen. Those groups contributing are acknowledged on the club's publicity posters.
Wherever possible, club members are kept in touch with club activities and events by email and through the website but for those who do not use the Internet, a brochure is provided in the foyer at Brampton Community Centre. The brochure is kept up to date and provides useful information to members and visitors.
In 2009 Brampton was voted the Best New Film Society of the Year by the internationally renowned, British Federation of Film Societies. In 2011 the club was awarded a Distinction for its marketing achievements and a Commendation for its programming, also by the Federation. The club was also voted one the three 'happiest' film clubs in the land by the film distribution company, Filmbank.
On 5th April 2013 the club was proud to achieve its 100th film screening.