Fabric Club in London to shut down permanently after drug-related deaths of teenagers.
Two drug-related deaths in the last three months at the 2,500 capacity nightclub in Islington led the Metropolitan police to request the local council to shut down the club.
There were many petitions and calls for the venue to remain open, including support from local politicians and the city’s mayor Sadiq Khan. “London’s iconic clubs are an essential part of our cultural landscape”, Khan said, “and I am urging them to find a common sense solution that ensures the club remains open, while protecting the safety of those who want to enjoy London’s clubbing scene.”
However, this did not wash with the Islington borough council who pulled the licence citing “grossly inadequate” security searches to deal with the open sale and consumption of illegal drugs in the club.
The closure of Fabric is a major blow for London nightlife, but is part of a global trend which has seen many clubs shut their doors. The number of clubs in the UK halved in the decade to 2015 as people turn to late bars and home entertainment instead.
Fabric co-founder Cameron Leslie noted “this is not a thriving industry. Look at the picture of London in 2006 then in 2016, and just take that as a snapshot. If we close I think it would be a rather damning testament to exactly where we are at the moment.”
Aside from problems with licences, police and local residents and changes in punter behaviour, many clubs in prime urban locations have been targetted by developers who know they can make good money by turning the space into apartments or offices.
In Dublin, the POD complex has just been sold for 6 million euro to Clancourt Holdings who have a 850 euro million plan to create a new ‘Covent Garden’-style cultural and commercial urban area in Dublin 2. It remains to be seen if a nightclub forms part of this plan.
Laura F. Nixon