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Hawera Cinemas bans pyjamas, dirty boots

A Taranaki cinema's ban on wearing pyjamas, onesies and dirty boots to screenings - and the public support and opposition to the move - has made global headlines.

Hawera Cinemas said it had seen an increasing number of patrons attending in nightwear in recent months.

It announced the ban in a Facebook post, adding the clothes did not encourage the right "vibe".

The dress code at the cinema has sparked heated debate on social media and has made global news headlines.

Cinema manager Kirsty Bourke said the cinema had, over the past two months, seen "an increase in customers wearing pyjamas and customers wearing dirty gumboots and work boots, so like many restaurants and clubs we decided to adopt a dress code".

"The support we have received is fantastic. We have had customers all day congratulating us," she said.

Judging by the Facebook debate, many people support the dress code - and wouldn't have thought of violating it in the first place.

"It's amazing people need to be told to get dressed before going out. Super market needs the same notice," one Facebook commenter said.

Not everyone agreed, however. Some argued the cinema should mind its own business and let their audience show up in whatever they choose.

"Wow didn't know you guys were the fashion police," said one comment, "I'm not a wearing pjs in public girl but I don't see how others wearing pjs out affects anyone else so I can't see the reason for this rule," said another.

Regardless of the social media debate, the cinema itself had not received any complaints since the policy was announced at the weekend.

However, Ms Bourke warned that "if customers turn up in their pyjamas, we will refuse entry".

She was confident the change would not be bad for business.

"We believe we will lose more customers by not adopting a dress code," she said.

"Restaurants and clubs have always had dress codes so why not cinemas?"


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