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Nightclub Space 289 is shutting down for good due to a massive rent hike

The club’s rent has more than doubled since 2019 and it says it cannot afford to keep going

Written by
Ellie Muir

The owners of independent nightclub Space 289 have announced that the venue will close this month due to steeply rising rent costs.

Nestled under a railway arch in the heart of Bethnal Green, Space 289 is an intimate 200-capacity independent venue which has been running electrifying club nights since October 2019.

‘As a small venue trying to push good music, it's not possible for us to generate enough income to survive such high rents,’ wrote founder Harry Follett on Instagram. ‘Nor do we want to begin the race to the cultural wastelands by putting on nights purely to make enough money to cover these excessive rents.’

The Instagram post announcing its closure is flooded with comments from regulars and avid partygoers. ‘Absolute travesty. An impeccable run of events,’ writes one person. ‘Tragic news. Only went there once and it was instantly one of my favourite clubs,’ says another.

Over its three years of life, the venue has hosted Pitchfork Music Festival and a slew of exciting electronic DJs and alternative musicians such as Shygirl, Breaka, Tim Reaper and even Danny L Harle. Proud of its low-cost tickets and community ethos, Space 289 said it simply could not continue with the rising cost of its rent.

Space 289 said that the Victorian arch under which the venue sits was sold by Network Rail in 2019 to the American Investment Bank Blackstone/The Arch Co, who are now looking to more than double the cost of renting it.

‘We have tried to fight them in court, but with mounting legal costs and no positive outcome in sight, we have no choice but to walk,’ Space 289 said. ‘We hope to return in some form, but for now, we need to take a breath and think about how we can come back stronger.’

A spokesperson from the Arch Company said: We have been trying to work with Space 289 to regularise the use of their premises and have offered support to enable them to stay. This includes offering a payment plan to help address their rental arrears, support through our Tenants’ Charter and granting three months’ rent free during the pandemic.’

But don’t fret. There is still time to two-step there before its doors shut for ever.

Support the final days of Space 289 in style and get yourself down to one of its final events this weekend before it closes for good later this month.

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Oh dear, not another one… mega-club Printworks is being shut down and turned into offices.

Bermondsey beer mile is putting on an actual beer-themed opera.

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