Ilfracombe rock bar is silenced
THE double whammy of licensing laws and the credit crunch has silenced the rock music at an Ilfracombe venue. Marlboro landlord Kit Goodchild said the regulations requiring him to have two door supervisors on duty at every live event and costing almost
THE double whammy of licensing laws and the credit crunch has silenced the rock music at an Ilfracombe venue.Marlboro landlord Kit Goodchild said the regulations requiring him to have two door supervisors on duty at every live event - and costing almost �100 a time - simply made it too expensive to continue.Under the promotion of Ray Williams from First Step Management, the venue hosted numerous bands at least once a week, often with three on the same night and with some very big names among them.It became known throughout the country and visitors to Ilfracombe have included Damon Albarn's band, The Good, The Bad and The Queen, as well as Emilie Autumn and Led Zep Too."It just seemed to be one obstacle after another,' said Kit."Re-opening again is a big risk, especially in this current climate, that's the problem,""If we had the support of local people in numbers we could probably afford to hire doormen - either that or if there are a couple of accredited local door supervisors who are music fans and willing to work for nothing on a Friday night!"The club gathered quite a following among local teenagers and young people keen to see quality live bands on a regular basis."As a venue it was on a par with the Cavern in Exeter and music-wise I would say it was the best rock venue in North Devon," said Ray Williams."With the Marlboro going, there's nowhere in Ilfracombe that has a gig every week now. We do a monthly gig at Yam Yams, which has been great, but we've lost the weekly one.""We had all ages here from 16 to 60 and we never had any trouble. Most of the kids' parents were happy to let them come because they knew it was safe and they did not drink or take drugs."The reaction from around the country has been horror that it's gone and the bands are gutted too. Emilie Autumn said the reason she chose this as one of only five UK gigs is because she could relax and be herself."Kit and Ray are keen to hear from anyone who has any ideas for resurrecting the Marlboro as a top rock venue or even just wishes to show their support. Call the venue on (01271) 862732 or email rayatfirststep@ yahoo.co.uk.