UK cinemas are set to record their highest total annual attendance figure since 1970 by the end of this year, new figures have revealed.

With 14.8 million admissions in November, 161.3 million tickets were purchased in the first 11 months of 2018 – up from 153.5 million year-on-year.

Well over 14 million admissions are expected to be registered by the end of this month, sending the total beyond the 1971 figure of 176 million, but short of the 193 million recorded the previous year. December admission figures have surpassed 14 million in each of the past five years.

Eight movies have generated at least £40m at the UK box office – double the number in comparison with last year, including ‘Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again’, Bohemian Rhapsody, Peter Rabbit and Black Panther.

“The level of refurbishment of existing sites and opening of new ones in the last few years has undoubtedly re-energised the public’s love of cinema-going,” Phil Clapp of the UK Cinema Association, told Variety. “Whether through installing recliners in multiplexes, investing in big sound and vision, or opening local ‘boutique’ models, it all adds to the mix.”

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