COMEDIAN Alan Davies has pledged his support for the campaign to re-open the former EMD building as a cinema.

The QI and Jonathan Creek star contacted the McGuffin Film Society after hearing of plans to convert the historic venue into a church.

Mr Davies, who was born in Loughton, said: "I spent many happy hours there as a child and find it extraordinary that its preservation as a cinema for local people is not a priority in the borough of Waltham Forest.

"With the recent demise of the dog track and now this news, it seems the protection of the area's historic and cultural landmarks is in the wrong hands."

Emmy award-winning actor David Warner, who starred in Titanic and The Omen, has also called on councillors to protect the former cinema.

He said: "It's essential for our future that we do not destroy the treasures of our past. This building saw the beginning of something we now take for granted - the shared experience of cinema. Please allow it to remain for that purpose.”

Alan Davies and David Warner join a growing list of celebrity supporters backing the McGuffin Film Society's campaign including Rolling Stones legend Mick Jagger, actors Tony Robinson and Meera Syal, veteran politician Tony Benn and Alfred Hitchcock's daughter Patricia.

The building’s owners the United Church of the Kingdom of god has submitted a planning application to convert the listed building into a church, cafe, flats and community space.

UCKG’s property manager Paul Hill said: “It seems odd that Alan Davies and David Warner did not make any attempt to contact us, as owners of the property, if they had any real concerns about the future of the former Granada Cinema on Hoe Street, Walthamstow.

“If they had done so they would have learnt that we are planning to restore the former cinema to its Art Deco glory, reinstating many original features as per Theodore Komisarjevsky‘s original design. We are working closely with English Heritage and others to achieve this.

“They would also have learnt that although the town centre lacks a contemporary formatted cinema, the Walthamstow Masterplan, as approved in May 2008 states that ‘The historic EMD cinema…. is not of sufficient scale.…. to provide a competitively viable venue for first run movies’.”