Indie Venue The Cellar Launches Crowd Funding Campaign
Bid to raise £80,000 by November 27th.
If we don’t, The Cellar will close before Christmas.
Oxford’s legendary music venue The Cellar, the city’s only truly
independent family-run small music venue, has launched a crowdfund
appeal in a last-ditch bid to stay open.
“Oxford’s best small venue is under threat…It’s also my childhood bar and the place Foals first learned to blow the fucking doors off a joint”
Yannis Philippakis – Foals
Founded as a music venue in 1998, The Cellar has been pivotal to success of the Oxford scene – with the likes of Foals, TEED, Young Knives, Stornoway and more recently ShaoDow and Glass Animals – all cutting their teeth at the venue. The Cellar has also hosted shows for artists as diverse as Mumford & Sons, Friendly Fires, Noah & The Whale, Youth Movies, Deerhoof, Fuck Buttons, Jeffrey Lewis, Afrika Bambaataa and Dawn Penn, as well as numerous club nights, and shows by comedians from Reginald D Hunter and Russell Howard to Russell Caine and Richard Herring.
At the end of 2017, The Cellar escaped certain closure when 14,000 people signed a petition to stop redevelopment plans by the venue’s landlord.
However, stringent new fire regulations, which would cut capacity from 150 to 60 people, have once again put The Cellar’s future in peril.
The venue’s plight was raised earlier this week at a meeting of the influential Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Committee, with UK rapper ShoaDow highlighting to MPs the importance of the venue when building his career.
With necessary renovations estimated to cost £80,000, The Cellar is today launching an emergency crowdfunding campaign – “Cellar Forever” – asking local businesses, artists, and independent music supporters to make a donation and secure the venue’s long-term future.
Details on the campaign can be found here www.crowdfunder/cellar-forever
Tim Hopkins, Venue manager, on the Cellar…
“It was people power that saved The Cellar in 2017, and that showed me how much the community care about this place and how important it is to keep it alive. We’ve always been so proud of the opportunities we can provide to local and national musicians to hone their craft, as well as seeing budding promoters, and technical crew come up through the ranks, and providing a warm friendly space for people to come together and let off some steam.
“Running a small venue these days is definitely challenging to make it work , and sadly, with the extent of the renovations we’ve been asked to make, we simply don’t have the money to pay for them. Which is why we’re calling on people power again with this crowdfunding campaign. As well as our own passion to keep going, we owe it to all our amazing supporters to give this one last try. The best thing is, if we are successful then it’ll make big improvements to what we already offer – widening the audience area, giving customers much better visibility and increasing our capacity to 200. We’re truly excited to get stuck in. We hope that with the right support we can ride through this difficult moment, and rebuild The Cellar for future generations to enjoy”
The Cellar has been influential in many of our lives. Not just musicians who have cut their teeth there, but also thousands of fans and music lovers who have descended the steps into this iconic venue in the heart of Oxford.
We are passionate about supporting and promoting independent businesses in Oxfordshire for two reasons. Firstly, to create a nurturing space for indies to find community and advice, but secondly, to make sure we keep the businesses that make our city rich, vibrant and unique.
If you can spare any money, please help out this indie venue, and if not, please share this campaign so it reaches as many people as possible to ensure it’s future.