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Music venue bid for Fibbers club

An application to York City Council has been submitted for Fibbers to be converted into a music venue

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York City Council has received an application for the site of former nightclub Fibbers to become a music venue. Fibbers closed in 2020 and has been derelict since, with the site being squatted in for a short time.

The application was submitted by George and Jimmy Craig, former members of the band One Night Only. They are also the operators of Jimmy’s Bar and Restaurant on Petergate in York as well as music venues in Liverpool and Manchester.

The Freshers Festival is an example of a live music event on campus. However, this was only a one-off event and many prefer a variety of music styles available.

The two hope to change the site into a 500-capacity music venue which could host touring bands and place York on the touring map. The site would also have offices above the music venue, according to the proposals.

After the success of their venues in Manchester and Liverpool, they hope to replicate it in York.

The original plans only included office space, yet there were concerns over the loss of Fibbers in the consultation which means that the music venue was added to recent proposals. York City Council will now process the application.

The former Fibbers site has been a source of a lot of local tensions since its closure. The site has been derelict for approximately two years and was adopted by squatters. They attempted to turn the site into a community centre which was used as a homeless shelter, providing hot meals and reportedly contained a small library. However after a court case, the squatters were evicted.

Students at the University have often complained about the lack of York nightlife in comparison to other university cities, so the introduction of a new venue, although not a nightclub, could be welcome.

Fibbers closed in January 2020 promising that it would reopen at a new venue in York, with much speculation over where this might be. However, since this announcement the venue has not reopened. Students hoped that an announcement would come once nightclubs were able to reopen since Covid-19 restrictions eased in July 2021, but there has been none as yet.

The former Thursday night Fibbers club night was replaced for the 2021-2022 academic year with a Ziggy’s club night. Ziggy’s is a newly opened club, replacing Mansion after it closed in January 2020 because it failed to renew its tenancy. Before opening, Ziggy's invested in the following renovations: a new sound system, bar area and toilets.

The fact that the Fibbers club night has been replaced has led to suggestions that Fibbers will not in fact reopen at a new location, despite promises to do so. There were previously fears that York’s nightlife would be hit by the closure of more nightclubs. During the pandemic, there  was speculation that Club Salvation would be converted into apartments but this never materialised.

Since re-opening, Kuda has been under the management of Rekom UK after Deltic Group went into administration. The new manager of Kuda Henry Glennan told The York Press back in July 2021 “We have vacancies across the board from cashiers to cleaners and from bar staff to hosts.”

He added: “We are always recruiting and look for bright new people to join our company"

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