A Dublin suburban cinema that once hosted a concert by US punk group The Ramones is at the centre of a preservation battle to be voted on next week.

The Cabra Grand Cinema was recommended for preservation but objections were received from the owners who argued the auditorium was of little architectural merit.

Dublin City Council officials are now recommending that the preservation order be limited to the front block including the foyer area, screen entrance doors and steps and ticket desk.

A similar decision is due on the Whitehall Grand where the council is recommending the preservation of the facade and the only remaining external box office from the 1950s.

The application to make both cinemas listed buildings was made by the Cinema Heritage Group which argued that the buildings are highly significant structures worth protecting.

Council experts say both cinemas closed in the 1970s and were bought by Gael Linn and used as bingo halls.

The Cabra Grand was also used for RTÉ'S pop music TV series 'Caught in the Act' in the 1970s and hosted concerts by The Ramones and Siouxsie and the Banshees in 1980.

The Cabra Grand Cinema opened in 1949 with 1,600 seats and the Whitehall venue opened five years later with 1,000 seats.

They were part of a chain owned by the firm of Henry J Lyons that also included cinemas in Fairview, the North Stand and the city centre.

The report states that the closure of suburban cinemas in the 1970s led to a loss of social space for young people in particular who were "associated with social dysfunction".

The current owners of both buildings Armiadale Ltd and the operators of bingo sessions and amusement halls Capital Entertainment and Leisure both objected to preservation of the buildings.

Armiadale argued that both are listed for demolition and redevelopment and are not of architectural interest.

Capital said preservation would mean significant maintenance costs and have a serious economic impact as there is no alternative use.

Council officials are recommending just the retention front sections in each case.

Elected councillors are to vote on the issue at next week's monthly meeting.