Dance Tunnel To Close In August

More London venues are closing, with the latest being Hackney club . The club’s operators blamed the “licensing climate in Hackney,” which “has made it impossible for us to get the hours we need to make Dance Tunnel sustainable in the long term.”

A statement from Hackney council reads: “Dance Tunnel has a premises licence to operate until 3am. They have not applied to extend their opening hours for over two years. They have however been able to regularly operate until 5am using Temporary Event Notices.

“Hackney Council values its vibrant and exciting nightlife, and we are proud of the borough’s reputation as a night-time destination. However, we need to balance the needs of businesses against the rights of our residents to a good night’s sleep, and as both our population and night time economy grow, that is becoming increasingly hard to do.”

The closure prompted the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) to issue a statement as well. According to ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls, the Dance Tunnel closure “shows how the fortunes of nightclubs are based on tight margins. A speedy resolution to the licensing issue here may well have saved Dance Tunnel, a venue highly valued by many London clubbers.”

Nicholls was referring to a planned consultation of venue licences by Hackney Council, which had been scheduled for last summer and eventually scrapped. A new consultation was announced, but that didn’t happen so far. Nicholls emphasized that “nightclubs are an important social and economic element of the night time economy but there are nearly half as many open today than there were just a decade ago. Licensing authorities need to recognise the need to allow nightclubs to prosper, if the British high street is to remain on track for recovery.”

Last year, ALMR published figures detailing that the number of nightclubs has dwindled from 3,144 in 2005 to 1,733 in 2015.