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Fighting for fabric

After the shut-down of the famed fabric nightclub last September, many voices have risen against the authorities’ decision to revoke its license following the tragic and unnecessary deaths of two teenagers from suspected drug overdoses, earlier this year. Islington council justified this decision arguing that the venue had a “culture of drug use” which its staff was “incapable of controlling”.

After the shut-down of the famed fabric nightclub last September, many voices have risen against the authorities’ decision to revoke its license following the tragic and unnecessary deaths of two teenagers from suspected drug overdoses, earlier this year. Islington council justified this decision arguing that the venue had a “culture of drug use” which its staff was “incapable of controlling”.

Big up everyone who got involved in Saturday’s protest! #secretsundaze #london savenightlife #savefabric

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The closure of fabric has been defined by the music community as a “critical moment” for UK clubbing, an essential part of the cultural landscape not only in London, but also across the country. Many do consider the measure unjust, as it does not seem to be the answer to drug-related problems, but instead, sets a troubling precedent for London’s nightlife.

Will this be the definitive end of fabric? The club itself will appeal against the council’s decision, and they are not alone. Many campaigns have been launched to get the necessary support, both social and financial, to help the club open their doors again.

Founded in 1999 by Keith Reilly and Cameron Leslie, it was a space conceived by people who go to clubs, for people that go to clubs. It became a cultural institution and an incubator for emerging talent. For nearly 17 years, over 6 million people from all over the world have passed through its doors, many of whom travelled to London specifically to visit the venue. More than 5000 artists used fabric as a platform to reach crowds of dedicated clubbers.

Many voices from different backgrounds have spoken against losing this iconic London nightspot, that has so enriched London’s nightlife and culture. A petition to keep the club open attracted 150,000 signatures soon after the club’s shut-down.

fabric has launched its own campaign #saveourculture to raise funds to start the expensive legal battle they’ll have to undergo to re-open. As of 11th October, it had already collected £290,742. They are not alone.

#thescratchperverts @fabriclondonofficial 24.03.2006 – Olympus OM10 – 1600 ISO Fujicolour 35mm Film

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#Savenightlife is a nationwide movement that promotes night culture and is supported by record labels, agencies, promoters and the public. They are completely funded by venues and people concerned for nightlife with the aim of raising their voices together to shape the cities of the future. The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) has joined the #savenightlife campaign to help everyone who loves nightlife to have a voice. For every signature given to their petition, an email is sent to their local Councillor and MP to amplify their sentiments.

Watch the NTIA video presenting  the #savenightlife campaign here. You’ll see Kate Simko, Andy C, Bill Brewster, Artwork and many more talking about what fabric means to them and what London and our cultural life stands to lose if the club doesn’t re-open. This film has been made thanks to a lot of generous people working across London’s creative industries who have donated their time, facilities, and skills for free: the hugely talented film crew, Gas & Electric for production support, Film Store Rental for the camera and lighting equipment, The Mill for grade time, and Wise Buddah for the sound mix. The music track used is Dense & Pika – Crackling, on Hot Flush Recordings. It was been directed by Adi Keer at Push London.

Another original initiative has been undertaken by Tim Griffith, who has been dancing for 24 hours non-stop, between 12pm (GMT) Friday 7th October, through to 12pm (GMT) Saturday 8th October, outside the doors of fabric in order to raise money to contribute towards the club’s legal fees. At the heart of this initiative is Tim’s passion for the underground music community and his need to help fight against an injustice. “We’re not only fighting to save fabric, and to stand up for London’s nightlife,” he writes on his Go Fund Me page, “we’re fighting to save our culture.” As of now, he has £1,833 of his £2,000 goal raised by 136 people in 1 month.

#savefabric

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The official appeal against the dance institution’s license revocation already has an official hearing date: November 28th. We’ll have to wait until then to see if fabric’s legal endeavours arrive at a good place.

www.fabriclondon.com

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