Marrickville Bowling Club faces late night party restrictions

Written by
Jordi Kretchmer
Mad Racket at Marrickville Bowling Club
Photograph: Daniel Boud

One of Sydney's most diverse venues suspends late night parties for the next six weeks

Marrickville Bowling Club is the latest venue to have late night restrictions imposed. The bowlo is being forced to cancel such events for the next six weeks. These include Picnic's debut event at the club (which will now take place at Jam Gallery) and 4our's gig with techno heavyweights Peter Van Hoesen and Eric Cloutier.

"In May we had a late night event and council received a noise complaint," club secretary manager Kim Townsend told Time Out. "That led to an investigation of our licences and building codes, which unearthed some compliance issues."

The club's board has now decided to suspend late night parties for the next six weeks while appeals are heard and the issues are resolved. Townsend said the club hoped this would only be a short-term problem. "We're doing everything we can," she said. "They are basically just building code issues. We're hoping the appeal is successful and we will be back to hosting late night events very soon."

As well as serving as a venue for daily bowling, the club has hosted many late night parties run buy local promotors including Mad Racket (pictured) and 4our.

Townsend emphasised that while the restrictions were frustrating for punters, promotors and the venue, the restrictions were a result of licence and building code issues only and were unrelated to the lockout laws. "It's red tape more than anything else," she said. "I don't think the council wants to victimise the late night community."

"The promotors have been so amazing," she said. "When I had to tell them it was so hard – they are all so entrepreneurial and their communities are so supportive as well."

"We've been running these events for over 17 years: the council is fairly supportive, the police are too, and most of all the community are overwhelmingly supportive."

The community surrounding the bowlo is certainly a diverse and vibrant one. Perhaps this is the only place in Sydney where you can throw shapes at a Mad Racket party, watch Sydney's favourite drag queens lip sync battle it out, and of course, play lawn bowls. "Hopefully we can turn it around and continue on for another 17 years," Townsend says.

Time Out couldn't agree more: we're hoping the issue gets resolved as soon as possible.

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