Well been quiet but a couple of things have occurred that need to be brought up. I was planning to do a review of what we have covered as we are about to hit the 100k mark for page views on the blog but the activity must revolve around current interests.
So according to Rania Khan Tower Hamlets has finally taken a nil policy even though they never got a clear mandate for it and it revolves around a bit of a con that they put in the earlier consultation around boundaries. This blog warned that this would be the ploy and that using what seemed an innocent question worked to cause a lot of issues. but we now have a nil policy with exceptions. Now the claim is that the council will only judge existing venues on merits but I wonder how long before the council try to push their luck and close a venue. Now the minutes haven't come out yet so this may get edited.
Will say it is a nice little earner for the council as the fee for each venue is £9,070. A big chunk (£2625) is allocated to compliance visit costs. Which depending on venue and time of day works out as 100 dances a year roughly with a bit of beer and the occasional glass for a dancer. So for all those lovely ladies out there here are a few tips on what to watch for in compliance officers. And not sure what the compliance officer will do in the case of the Swan.
Shoes and watches, most dancers will know exactly what I mean by that. Poor council employees are usually struggling with a mortgage, kids etc so expect a wad of cash flashed but they don't look like it should be theirs.
Tired eyes.... over a year they will see 300 dances or so. Too much in too short a time gives an overload on the senses.
Flashing the cash too quickly. They will be wanting to entrap dancers but have a limited time so they will act like really big spenders.
There will be other more subtle signs like forgetting to put away their council id card.They will also be worried in case regular council employees come in as they could identify them. Depending on venue and its relative location to the council buildings. So please dancers do not give those guys an excuse to close venues. Force the council to show that they have another agenda.
So across London to Camden and Spearmint Rhino who have been told that the council are withdrawing their license. Rather than go back over the power couple and their collision course with the venue which we commented on here. Just to bring you up to date we now have a fifth member of the licensing committee who is Labour and you have to feel that with the couple pressing for a vote with them we will see constant issues. Now I am sure when SPMR get the official notification they will appeal as it is all about curtains that create a private booth which is what the council don't want along with CCTV in the toilets by the sounds of it which the council do want.
So off we go to court, I cannot see the SPMR flagship rolling over and playing dead. And they will continue to operate up until a judge says the council are right which is definitely not certain. And even if the judge does I can see the place adapting to the regs. The power coule will find excuses to try and shut the venue every time and even claiming that Tottenham Court road is a residential area.... I mean really the 100 club and all the shops and bars are so obviously residences. However the Fitzrovia area has some people that want to try and close the place down (probably over property value in their eyes) and no doubt they will be supporting the two councillors behind the closure attempts. I will say these two are the most socially media savvy Councillors I have come across so far with very little connecting them to anything suggesting they are applying personal morals and yet reading the statement made by Thomas as chair of the committee it does come across as moralistic in my humble opinion.
Anyway this will no doubt rumble on just like the Tower Hamlets fiasco. And not that this blog should be saying we told you so, but on Tower Hamlets we told you so.