Iconic Camden music venue changes hands

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Farewell: Chalk Farm's iconic Lock Tavern is set to change hands at the end of this month. (Image: Ewan Munro, Flickr)
Farewell: Chalk Farm's iconic Lock Tavern is set to change hands at the end of this month. (Image: Ewan Munro, Flickr)

Related tags: Camden, London, Music

Famous Camden venue the Lock Tavern is set to change hands at the end of this month, with new owners pledging that the pub will continue its showcasing of live music.

Lanzarote, the venue’s bookers, confirmed an imminent closure of the pub to Time Out, but did not disclose what was in store for the future of the site earlier this week.

Independent pub group, East London Pub Co., that acquired Ten Bells, Spitalfield in 2014, will take over the venue and invest upwards of £0.5m into the site.

A six month restoration will see the installation of a new bar, roof terrace and rear beer garden.

The pub will briefly close 29 to 31 August.

Legacy

The new owners said they will maintain the pub’s full schedule of live music and weekly DJs.

The Chalk Farm pub reopened in 2004 and quickly became the epicentre of the ‘nu rave’ movement, showcasing trailblazing DJs and bands.

Artists including Adele, Amy Winehouse, Florence and the Machine, Franz Ferdinand, Metronomy, Mystery Jets and Tame Impala have had their start playing on the pub’s small stage.

Farewell party

A farewell party will be hosted by Blogger’s Delight and include sets from Casper C, Skull Juice, NikNikNik, Filthy Dukes, Matt Walsh and surprise special guests, on the bank holiday 27 August.

The Blogger’s Delight organisers said on Facebook: “We’re not normally ones to look back, but the opportunity to play the final records at the venue was too good an opportunity to resist.”

“We’ll be donning our Blogger’s hats one last time, and inviting some of our favourite previous guests to join us.

“You can expect pub grub, pear cider, questionable fashion choices and perhaps a few illegally downloaded MP3 classics.”

A few days before the venue takes a hiatus, a free entry event, Au Revoir Lock Tavern, will be hosted by Black Cat White Cat Promotions, on 23 August.

Camden closures

Most of the bar team will remain the same with all current staff offered new contracts, according to the new owners.

The news comes after the closure of venues Proud Camden and the Forge in the borough.

In March, Proud Camden closed after 17 years of arts and music, with its management deciding to pursue new sites near Waterloo Bridge and on Camden High Street instead.

Music venue the Forge closed last year after directors described running the business as “exceptionally tough”.

Gig memories

Singer Florence Welch reminisced about an early gig at the venue, in an interview on Radio X earlier this summer,

She said: “"Even Adele you could say came from that little scene that was going on of people putting on club nights and gigs.

“There was a gig at the Lock Tavern where it was like Kate Nash was headlining, supported by Adele, then me and Emmylou Harris. That was the line-up."

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