WE'RE all fed up with it but the end may at last be in sight.

A court showdown this summer could sort out the long-running Imax saga once and for all.

The controversial cinema part of the complex on Bournemouth's seafront voted Britain's second ugliest building has been shut for almost 18 months.

Now a county court case between the pension fund that owns the site and operators Sheridan should see the start of efforts to bring the attraction back to life.

The Northern Ireland Local Government Officers' Super-annuation Committee (Nilgosc), which holds the lease, has asked architects to look at other potential uses for the building but cannot make any definite decisions ahead of the court case.

Only if the court rules in favour of Nilgosc at the hearing in August, will it have the option to change the use of the building.

But if Nilgosc lose, the Sheridan group will retain control of the cinema and will be unable to alter the terms of its use for a further six years.

Jim Burgess, Nilgosc's property advisor, told the Daily Echo he was as frustrated as anyone else at the length of time the matter was taking.

"It's very frustrating but there's nothing we can do," he said. "We are hoping to take over the lease and we need to go through the proper process to do that."

Nilgosc took the site off Sheridan's hands last year months after the cinema closed for a refit and failed to reopen.

Mr Burgess said: "The court case is over a number of things, for example the failure to stay open which they are required to do under the lease and late payment of rent.

"There are other items as well but they are the main ones."

Bournemouth East MP Tobias Ellwood, who has met with Nilgosc to discuss the way ahead for the Imax, said he was hoping for a swift conclusion.

"Bournemouth is now known for having the country's most attractive beaches as well as one of its ugliest building," he said.

"Everyone is calling for action to change this carbuncle on the seafront but until this dispute between Nilgosc and the Sheridan Group is sorted nothing can be done."

Nobody from Sheridan was available to comment.