One of Britain’s oldest entertainment sites, The Clapham Grand, is the latest in a long line of local venues seeking emergency funding to allow them to continue operating during the current crisis.
Having been the nerve centre of London’s early twentieth-century music-hall scene and survived two world wars, The Grand has, in more recent years, become a ravey haven for many of the capital’s marginalised communities. The venue now faces its end unless it can raise tens of thousands of pounds in the next month.
The musician Frank Turner, currently campaigning to save some of London’s most at-risk venues, called The Grand a ‘special case’, and warned that ‘without venues, the culture in our communities will have no space to germinate, grow, thrive, or even exist’.
Former prime minister John Major, whose father was a music hall and circus performer, has added his voice to calls to save The Grand saying, ‘I hope that everyone who cares for music hall and variety will offer any help they can to this wonderful and venerable old theatre’.
A recent survey by the Music Venue Trust discovered that 556 of its 670 member venues are currently under threat of imminent closure. Many aren’t eligible for government funding, despite still continuing to pay rent and insurance.
Donate to The Clapham Grand’s crowdfunding campaign here.
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