The End of Life as we know it

Assistant Editor 21 February 2008

Two of Cambridge’s student nights have been shut for the last two weeks of term after bosses decided to shut Club 22.

Both the Sunday Service and new gay night Fusion will stop running after this week as the club closes for refurbishment on Thursday 28th February.

Ents Manager Simon Burdus, who was told on Tuesday that the club was shutting, said that CUSU stands to lose around £1,800 from the shock closure.

It was revealed to CUSU in January that Club 22 would be shutting for the refit over the Easter vacation, to avoid disruption to the student nights.

But the Ents chief claimed the refurbishment, which will take six weeks and cost more than half a million pounds, had to be brought forward.

“We’ve agreed to do it early because in the long run we want to make the nights successful – in a place students want to come to,” he said.

“Club 22 had a reputation of being bit dingy”, Burdus added. “But I know from looking at the plans that it will be unrecognisable from the refit”.

He said that CUSU only agreed to the club closing on the condition that Luminar – the company that owns both 22 and Ballare – agreed to put on a student night elsewhere for the last two Sundays of term. Drinks at the special Sunday night will be priced at £1.50.

And the Ents Manager told TCS that The Sunday Service has been completely scrapped. He said that a new night would be launched with the revamped club.

The LGBT club night Fusion – launched last Tuesday – will continue to run as normal after the refit. The night was previously run by a private promotion company, before being brought back to CUSU in January.

A senior member of last year’s LGBT executive, who helped to win the Tuesday LGBT night for CUSU, said: “It’s a real shame that the club has closed so unexpectedly without informing students beforehand, especially given that CUSU LGBT and CUSU Ents have worked hard to make the new night a success”.

James Beattie, newly elected CUSU LGBT President, said: “I think everyone on the exec is disappointed that it’s closing without any prior notice to us.

“We are annoyed that we’ll lose money from the two term time sessions. It’s especially disappointing given the work the previous committee put in to make the night student run.

“But renovations will definitely improve the venue – it’s not like it could get any worse – so we’re sure it’ll be popular”.

The Manager at Club 22 said: “This has been a long time coming. We’re really excited about the refurbishment.”

Burdus, who took on the Ents job after the previous manager was fired, admitted that CUSU Ents had suffered significant difficulties in the past. But he told TCS that things are continuing to improve.

“With Kinki the biggest problem was the music – which we’ve changed with the new DJ”, the new Ents boss said. “The biggest problem with Sunday Service was the venue – which is now being fixed.

“The LGBT night wasn’t run properly – and now we have a proper organisational structure in place.”

The Ents boss said that he had high hopes for the new Sunday night. “We hope it will be the best student night in Cambridge.

“We should make more money, which can go back to the students. Money from Ents funds sabbatical officers and essential welfare equipment.”

Jonathan Laurence

Assistant Editor