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Save The Tub!

Local venue under threat of closure, but you can help.

Written By Andy Gunton

  • Photograph by Mark Richards

  • Photograph by Mark Richards

  • Photograph by Mark Richards

Shortly after posting the article about the upcoming local music venues review, being carried out by Hastings Borough Council, I learned of an imminent threat to one of Hastings' most loved venues.

The venue, known variously as The Union Bar, The Tub, or The Tubman to its many loyal users has to find approx £5,000 to improve fire safety within the pub, or it will have to close down by the end of February.

The venue have started up a fundraising page with Go Fund Me (see details below) to help raise funds for those improvements, and over £1,000 has already been raised, within a day. Something that shows just how much the venue means to the people of the Hastings area.

With the greatest repect to all other local venues, in my humble opinion The Union Bar (as I will refer to it) is the most important music venue in the Hastings area.

A bold statement maybe, but since the demise of The Crypt several years ago, The Union Bar has been the venue where just about every new, young, original local band has made their debut, cut their teeth, and made their first falterng steps towards bigger and better things.

Lauded local bands such as Kid Kapichi, Matilda's Scoundrels, Alibi and others would not be hittings the heights that they are now without a venue such as The Union Bar to play their first ever gigs at.

The Union Bar, under the stewardship and pure hard work of Paul Osmond and Harvey Palmer, have always prided themselves on providing a stage, literally, for local bands to play that all important debut gig on.

They've resisted the urge to go down the cover/tribute band route and have always encouraged new and original music within the venue, somethng that should be applauded and supported.

The Union Bar has been a real labour of love for those involved with the venue, and as Paul says below, it's never been about making money, it's always been about supporting live music and new, local acts.

But it's not just local acts that have graced the stage of The Union Bar. Bands from across Europe have also played there, as well as up and coming UK acts too.

One of the best gigs I've seen for many a year took place at The Union Bar in September, 2014.

The acts that night included Kid Kapichi and one of those up and coming bands, Slaves, a band that are now one of the most highly regarded bands in the country and who are now playing headline tours, including a recent gig at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill.

If we don't have venues such as The Union Bar where are those new bands, wherever they come from, going to learn their craft, and start their musical careers?

The loss of The Union Bar would be a huge blow to the town of Hastings, and not just for the bands either.

Many local teenagers have experienced their very first live gig at The Union Bar, an experience that may well have set them on the path to a life of gig going.

So please help support this very important fund raising campaign.

It's something that all of us at The Stinger magazine are wholeheartedly behind, and we wish Paul and his staff all the best in their efforts.

We need The Union Bar.

Here's the text of the announcement made by Paul on the donation page:

"After a visit from the Fire Brigade we have been served with a licence review relating to the out dated fire proofing in the pub.

We have until 23rd of February to satisfy them that the work has been done.

This work includes fire proofing all levels to 30 minutes of fire resistance. That means new ceilings, fire doors to be installed and the most expensive part being a hard wired fire alarm.

The estimated cost of this is around £5000. A cost that we just can not afford.

The pub has never been about making money. It's always been about the love of live music and promoting young and up and coming bands.

If we can not meet the requirements of the enforcement notice we will be left with no other option than to close down.

Even if you could just spare a pound to help towards these costs it may well help us to keep the fire officer happy and continue to put on events and bring more bands and artists to Hastings.

If you got this far thank you for taking your time to read this. If you're able to donate we will forever be indebted and we thank you in advance.

Paul and the Tub crew Tublife x"

Here is a link to the Go Fund Me donation page:

Please give what you can spare and help save this very important local music venue.

Together we can make a difference.

Thanks for your help x

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