March 05, 2015

UK Venues You Can’t Walk Away From

These days the content of an event is often not enough to please the crowd. For the most part, headliners don’t quite cut it anymore. As Grillstock BBQ and Music Festival organiser, Ben Merrington said at the Event Production Show, “The experience is the most important thing. Music is so accessible these days. People just want the whole experience.”


With the big bang of warehouse and illegal parties over the past couple of years, ravers seek out these ‘experiences’ more than ever before and any ‘normal’ party won’t suffice. They want a place where they can be free and themselves. Access to secret locations plays part to granting their raver allegiance and fulfilling their night time alter ego. Of course, the experience doesn’t stop there. Taking into account the need for a unique space that also allows for creative production, we’ve dug up a list of venues throughout the UK you won’t be able to keep your mitts off.


MC Motors, Dalston
Its industrial look and location is likely to make the average person’s eyes stir in another direction, however, looks can be deceiving. This 6,000 sq/ft venue has a skylit room, which joins it to the adjacent school. Since the war it’s been used a boiler maintenance depot and car mechanics, but is now available for all sorts of events ranging from product launches to corporate events.

Shapes, Hackney
Shapes is a large 6,000 sq/foot warehouse sitting right beside the canal in Hackney Wick. It can hold up to 1,500 guests combined with its outdoor area. This venue comes at no cheap cost, but what do you expect from the venue ‘secretly’ known to hold Boiler Room gigs? Away from London’s hustle and bustle, there’s more than enough space to unleash the owl within and keep going till the early hours of the morning. Due to its location it falls no short of a community gathering of like minded creative people.


The Rainbow Venues
Getting a place outside of London can make for a more exciting adventure for your guests. You could provide a party bus to the location, and when guests arrive they’ll be thrust into a space allowing them to escape their potentially routinely city lives. The Rainbow Venues provide a range of intimate and unique ‘shelters’ providing room from as little as 500 guests to more than 1000. If you’re looking for a more cosy underground club feel then you can go for the Cellar Door, but if you’re looking for an open area welcoming several guests there’s their Textile Factory, The Warehouse, The Arena and much more! Check out this link for more detail.


Victoria Tunnel
That’s right, a tunnel! Back in the days (1849), when Newcastle was a coal mining city, this tunnel was used to transport coal to the riverside, all ready to be shipped. Then in 1939, it was used as an air raid shelter to protect the Northumbrian citizens in World War 2. With such a great history to it, it will undoubtedly create a feel you couldn’t find in your typical club. Less than a year ago the tunnel was used for an orchestra performance, which you can see here. Best you grab it before all the others do!


The Tetley
The Tetley is an arts deco building previously used as the Tetley tea headquarters. It’s now run by Project Space Leeds (PSL) as a centre for contemporary art and learning. It welcomes creative minds, with the hope of developing their talents. This unique piece of heritage is a great venue for throwing exhibitions.


Camp and Furnace
This 35,000 sq/ft Edwardian Foundry, previously used as a blade making factory, has an abundance of space to be used for festivals, product launches, fashion shows, exhibitions, and much more. The furnace maintains some of its heritage, as remains of manufacturing machinery add to the character of the venue. The campy is covered in fairy lights and vintage caravans, making it a cute and cosy space for a creative community. The venue welcomes has been known to welcome artists, such as Caribou, Max Cooper and Horse Meat Disco, and will undoubtedly be opening its doors to much more. The space welcomes a range of reputable artists, but again thinks about the whole experience by providing attendees with a creative and inspiring playground.


The Albert Hall
After being closed for 40 years, recently reopened Wesleyan Chapel now recognises itself as a music hall, as well as an area that can now be used for conferences too. But if you’re looking to throw a party here, its baroque and gothic influences, and century old organ will surely create an enigmatic experience. Since its reopening, its been welcoming an array of artists, such as The Vaccines and Carl Cox.

So, if you’re a UK promoter looking for a change of scene, or an international promoter wanting to bring your event to the UK, make sure to grab up one of these venues.

Emma Brincat