Pub that has hosted live music since 1854 closes after neighbour noise complaints

By James Wallin

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Noise abatement notice, Sound, Nightclub, Hove city council

The Blind Tiger Club closed at the weekend
The Blind Tiger Club closed at the weekend
A pub that has been playing live music for 160 years has closed down after neighbours complained about the noise.

Playgroup Live chose to close the Blind Tiger Club after Brighton and Hove City Council issued it with a noise abatement notice.

It described the council’s actions as a “music ban” and said it was sparked by one resident who moved into the flat above the pub a year ago. However, the council insisted it had received numerous complaints from people in three neighbouring streets.

The company said it did not have the funds for soundproofing and that with the potential for a £20,000 fine if it breached the noise order and with its reputation built on live music there was no other option but to close.

The building that houses the Blind Tiger Club was originally the Norfolk Arms public house and has hosted live music since 1854. It became the Blind Tiger Club in 2011 after three decades as Hector's House, which made its name as a showcase for up and coming bands.

Music ban

The venue closed its doors at the weekend and a statement on the club’s website said: "In effect, the council’s notice is a music ban. And in the case of The Blind Tiger, where music events are essential, a music ban means closure - something that the council and neighbour are well aware of.

“We were already facing serious existential problems as a venue, due to rather run-of-the-mill, sign-of-the-times, financial issues - but we were battling through them, with the support of local people, artists from around the world, and our membership base.

“This new music ban, after 160 years of music and drinking in the space, is now set to be the final nail in the coffin of The Blind Tiger on Grand Parade.”

A council spokeswoman said the authority had received "numerous noise complaints from local residents about this venue for several years".

She added: “By law we must investigate noise complaints made to the council. We also have a legal duty to serve a noise abatement notice on those responsible when a noise nuisance is identified. 

Complaints

“On 14 March a noise abatement notice was served on the leaseholders who operate Blind Tiger following complaints about noise from live music.  The business was given two months to comply with the notice. This gave time for assessments to take place and any necessary sound insulation work to be undertaken. 

“Blind Tiger chose to stop operating at the venue when the abatement notice period ran out on 14 May. The council has not closed the venue.

“The council’s environmental health team has worked with the business and the Police and council’s licensing team to try and resolve any complaints received. The council is continuing to work with all parties to try and resolve this case.”

A petition​ appealing the council's noise order on the club has been signed more than 5,500 times already.

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