With a number of clubs in the UK shutting in the last few months, notably in London, a new organisation’s been launched to counteract further closures and highlight the importance of nightlife.
Plastic People and Crucifix Lane are two venues that have closed in the capital, with Fabric also recently threatened with closure, but Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) aims to undertake and publish research to prove to that the late-night industry has plenty of positives concerning “employment, business rates, regeneration of areas and tourism to the UK”.
Members of the board include Dance Tunnel’s Dan Beaumont and Alex Proud of Proud Group, and another of their goals is to get planning laws changed so venues aren’t harmed by redevelopment, also lobbying local and national politicians.
Chairman Alan D Miller, cofounder of East London’s Old Truman Brewery, said: “We want to provide a voice for those in the Night Time Industries who range from the single venue operator to those with numerous venues.
The decision to spend the summer working in Ibiza wasn’t a particularly considered one. A few weeks after drunkenly proposing the idea to a couple of mates back home, there we were, checking into a beachside hotel for a fortnight. My aims for these 14 days were simple: get a job, find somewhere to live and be thrifty with what little money I had.
Two weeks passed in a haze of sunburned days and twisted nights, and I found myself jobless, homeless and skint. I find myself seriously considering selling drugs – going as far as placing an order with a notorious San Antonio dealer – but the thought of getting caught, spending Christmas in a 6x9ft cell, the submissive wife to hairy man named Pablo, acts as an overwhelming deterrent. I even contemplate the H-word: home.
Eventually I answer an advert in the Ship Inn looking for PRs for a new night at one of the big clubs. Not only do I get the job – which, it transpires, pays in grams as well as much-needed Euros – but a workmate points me in the direction of a vacant, one-bedroom basement flat. It’s dark, damp and smelly, overrun with cockroaches, has no natural light and offers little change out of €800 a month. I take it.
“We need our fellow owners and operators to sign up with us so that we can be an even stronger voice in the UK. This is the first step of creating something that can be enormously influential.”
The Hydra, Egg London and Fabric are among those with founding members, and NTIA is after more venue owners and operators. Head here if you want to get involved.