Brixton Academy to reopen under stringent conditions

By Gary Lloyd

- Last updated on GMT

Crucial to the area: many businesses suffered huge losses after Brixton Academy closed in December 2022 (credit: Getty/400tmax)
Crucial to the area: many businesses suffered huge losses after Brixton Academy closed in December 2022 (credit: Getty/400tmax)

Related tags Licensing Legislation Health and safety Social responsibility Brixton Academy NTIA

A collaborative effort to reopen Brixton Academy has been hailed as key in the decision to allow the famous music venue to open its doors again, according to the Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA).

Although Lambeth Council has allowed the site to retain its licence after the death of two people at a concert in December 2022, it has stipulated new operating and licensing conditions that must be adhered to.

Many hospitality businesses in the surrounding area of south London have suffered “enormous” losses since the closure of Brixton Academy​.

NTIA chief executive Michael Kill recognised the decision to allow Brixton Academy to retain its licence and reopen as “a momentous milestone in safeguarding this cherished landmark”.

He continued: “Our profound appreciation goes out to the countless supporters and stakeholders who rallied behind us during this critical juncture.

“Brixton Academy has consistently held a special place in the hearts of music aficionados and its cultural significance is immeasurable.

“We have consistently advocated for its safe reopening and [this] decision reaffirms our unwavering commitment to ensuring its continued success as a hub for live music and entertainment.

Unyielding spirit

He added the achievement owes much to its collaboration with the local community, artists and fans.

“We have showcased the resilience and unyielding spirit that define Brixton and its dynamic music scene,” Kill said. “We are indebted to each and every individual who signed petitions, participated in meetings and voiced their support through various avenues.”

Kill recognised the responsibility that accompanies the reopening and acknowledged the tragic events of last December that resulted in the loss of two lives.

He added: “We are resolute in our commitment to supporting the implementation of the agreed stringent safety measures to prevent any such tragedy from recurring. Our paramount concern remains the safety and enjoyment of all those who enjoy nightlife.

“This is a testament to the potency of collective action and the enduring passion for live and electronic music culture. As we embark on this journey forward, we eagerly anticipate welcoming music enthusiasts, artists, and the community to partake in the enchantment of live performances once more.

“We extend our heartfelt gratitude for standing alongside us and for safeguarding this iconic venue. Together, we will continue to inscribe the history of Brixton Academy with indelible musical moments and cherished memories.”

Huge sense of relief

Meanwhile, fellow campaigner for the reopening of Brixton Academy Save Our Scene’s George Fleming said: “We are feeling a huge sense of relief that Brixton Academy is safeguarded for the future, as will many others.

“We recognise this was a tragic case and welcome all of the new safety measures that have been implemented by AMG & Lambeth Council.

“The public support for this venue has been immense and we’d like to thank everyone who rallied together and signed the various petitions and campaigns.”

He explained it is essential to look after the UK’s cultural spaces and added they are “the lifeblood of this country”.

With 1 in 3 venues closing down in the past four years and operating costs now 40% higher than pre-pandemic levels, Fleming is worried about the future of UK arts and culture.

He urged the Government and local authorities to recognise the importance of the sector and the role it plays in people’s lives.

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