London has lost too many LGBT+ venues since the turn of the millennium, so it’s a pleasure to report that one of the very best, the Royal Vauxhall Tavern, seems to have secured its medium-term future.
James Lindsay, the RVT’s CEO, announced today that he has signed a new 20-year lease with the building’s owner, Immovate.
‘The new lease replaces the older short-term lease which was due to expire in 2019,’ he wrote in a statement shared on Twitter.
This is definitely good news for the historic venue – which we recently named as one of the most iconic places in London – but its longer-term future remains precarious while it’s owned by Immovate, an Austrian property development company which has never made its long-term plans for the building clear.
‘We welcome this news,’ says Rob Holley of RVT Future, a group which has been campaigning to safeguard the venue for several years. ‘We hope this stability will allow our community to flourish, and give James Lindsay the certainty he needs to be able to invest in the world’s oldest LGBTQ+ venue.’
‘RVT Future and its thousands of supporters continue to believe that the future of the Royal Vauxhall Tavern will only be truly secure when it is owned by the community, and we will now work with James Lindsay, Lambeth Council, the Mayor of London, and RVT punters and supporters from across the globe to make this a reality.’