Dundee’s Reading Rooms is the latest Scottish music venue to come under threat of closure.
Sources close to the club believes that it recent construction in the immediate area, including a new hotel, could see the establishment being forced to close, coming under pressure from the police and local authorities.
The club, on Blackscroft, is also located close to the new V&A museum. A fixture on the Dundee scene for more than 17 years, its outside wall bears a ‘Blue Plaque’ marking the appearance there of Lee “Scratch’ Perry, when the Jamaican dub legend first appeared there in 2002.
Although hosting its fair share of rock shows, the Reading Rooms is more of a clubbing venue with the likes of Roy Ayers, Gilles Peterson and Afrika Bambaataa all appearing over the years as the venue made its reputation. The likes of Eclair Fifi, Avalon Emerson, Big Miz and Paranoid London have all been booked in recent weeks.
An online petition was signed 7000 times in a mere 48 hours before being closed, supposedly after legal advice was taken – with a piece on The Skinny website speculating further on accusations of police harassment, following the club’s capacity cut by more than half to 200. The thinking seems to be that the local authorities would rather see the club closed to allow further gentrification of the area. This flies in the face of the recently-introduced Agent of Change principle, which dictates that developers take on the responsibility for noise issues when building new homes or hotels near music venues.
The campaign now instead centres on a Facebook page created to campaign for the venue’s future.
More at www.readingroomsdundee.com.