'Enough is enough, let us dance' - Nightclubs lose patience over lockdown

The owner of the Empire Lounge in Great Yarmouth says he needs some financial support if he is to su

The owner of Great Yarmouth' s Empire Lounge says he is lucky to be able to open in a limited capacity but that many others across the country will not survive the June 21 lockdown lifting delay. - Credit: Archant

Nightclub bosses have shared their frustration over the likely delay of England's final lockdown easing.

With prime minister Boris Johnson set to tell the country that it would be safer to go ahead with step four of the lockdown roadmap on July 19 instead of June 21, Bradley Fish of Great Yarmouth's The Jube said the delay would be both disappointing and costly.

"You cannot be angry about it," he said.

"But we just want to be allowed to do our jobs.

"I had a list of 39 steps at one point, now there are 60 or 70.

"Now it is time to get back. The businesses want it and the public wants it.


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"People are itching to come out. On the whole they have been respectful and done things in a safe way. We can only praise our customers for their support in this way.

"But it is time to let go of the handbrake and get on with it.

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"The customers are saying 'enough is enough, let us dance.'

The move follows warnings from scientists that the rapid spread of the Delta variant first identified in India risked a "substantial" third wave if it was allowed to spread unchecked.

Mr Johnson is expected to appeal to the public to show patience, with one last push to ensure that when controls do finally end it is "irreversible".

Ben Jay (left) and Kelly Evans, directors of the Ocean Rooms in Gorleston. Photo: Howard Marshall

Ben Jay (left) and Kelly Evans, directors of the Ocean Rooms in Gorleston. Photo: Howard Marshall - Credit: Archant

Meanwhile Ben Jay said everyone involved in Great Yarmouth's Hippodrome Circus, the re-purposed Empire, and Gorleston's Ocean Room were "expecting the worst."

 At Gorleston it would mean they could not afford some of the planned events if it meant limited seating.

And at Yarmouth's seafront Empire, although they had always hoped to reopen at the end of July, he said the delay had made them question whether they should have put so much money into something they might not be able to reopen.

The Ocean Room nightclub in Gorleston, now run in partnership between Kelly Evans and her cousin Ben

The Ocean Room nightclub in Gorleston, now run in partnership between Kelly Evans and her cousin Ben Jay. Photo: Kelly Evans - Credit: Archant

He said: "We are waiting to see what we can and cannot do and what the new rules will be.

"We are always expecting the worst but will make the best of it."

The owner of the Empire Lounge in Great Yarmouth says he needs some financial support if he is to su

The owner of Great Yarmouth' s Empire Lounge says he is lucky to be able to open in a limited capacity but that many others across the country will not survive the June 21 lockdown lifting delay. - Credit: Archant

At the Empire Lounge in Yarmouth's Tower Complex Mario George said the delay was "a massive hit" for late-night hospitality, which many venues would struggle to survive.

Although he had been able to open an outside terrace since April 12, the bar was only operating at 25pc of normal nightclub capacity, with the added costs of table service.

"I really do believe this will be the end for many nightclubs across the country. They have been shut now for 16 months.


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