Petition to save Camden pub gains 4,000 signatures

By Emily Sutherland

- Last updated on GMT

Petition to save Camden pub gains 4,000 signatures

Related tags: Lgbt, Camden

A petition to save Camden based pub The Black Cap has attracted over 4,000 signatures in two days.

The petition, started by Labour councillor Danny Beales, calls on the venue’s new owners to reopen and return it to its original use as a pub and LGBT cabaret and performance site.

Beales said: “I was extremely pleased when planning permission to convert The Black Cap was rejected, so was shocked to hear that it had closed anyway. There has been a tide of frustration from the community who feel strongly that it is unacceptable.

We’re trying to get the new owners round the table to present them with the petition and press on them the importance of The Black Cap not just as a pub but as LBGTQ cultural site.”

The PMA​ understands that pictures of work going on inside the pub have been circulated online, and that signage outside the pub has been removed.

Paul McGill, director of new owners Camden Security LLP stressed the company’s intentions to keep the site as a leisure venue.

McGill said: “We recognise the value and cultural significance of The Black Cap and therefore didn’t go to the highest bidder-we’ve gone to someone who will run the site as a bar, café or leisure site rather than as a supermarket. We’ve gone to someone who will be sympathetic to the local community.”

Joe Parslow, a promoter who co-produced The Black Cap’s popular night The Meth Lab attributed the petition’s success to the sense of community the pub created.

Parslow said: “The petition’s success clearly attests to the importance of The Black Cap. The fact that nearly 5,000 have now signed the petition goes to show the venue is hugely important and that the new owners cannot ignore the cultural heritage and social role The Black Cap has to play.

“It was not just a nightspot but a community hub. This has been taken from the community and is very difficult to find elsewhere in Camden or even North London.”

The Black Cap was awarded asset of community value status earlier this month in an attempt to strengthen its protection against redevelopment.

Nigel Harris, director of Camden LGBT Forum said: “We nominated The Black Cap for ACV status not simply because it is a great place to eat, drink and hear great Cabaret.

“We nominated it because it ensures our local residents have a safe space to go and meet other LGBT people which is particularly important for people who may not be able to come out to their families.

The next steps are to maintain a presence to let people know what is happening to The Black Cap, and make sure everyone is aware of what its ACV status means.”

The venues shock closure on April 12 drew heated protests last weekend, with staff, locals and prominent members of the LGBTQ community gathering outside the pub to voice their anger.

London has a seen a spate of pub closures recently including the bulldozing of Maida Vale’s historic Carlton Tavern, the only building on its road to have survived the Blitz. 

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1 comment

> 4,000

Posted by david,

Over 5,800 have now signed this petition.

Camden Security LLP might wonder whether it was such a wise purchase. It might also wonder whether it is better to reach an accommodation with the campaigners rather than try to hoodwink them with platitudes and phrases such as planned 'leisure site'.

A classic example of timing being so important. The bun feast for developers acting against the wishes of the community are over.

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