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The night the clubs fell silent (for a minute)

Nightclubs across London turned their music off at midnight for one minute as a silent protest against club closures.

It comes just weeks after Fabric, one of the biggest venues in the country, closed after its licence was revoked.

Organisers say the silent protests were “to show what our world will look like if we continue to lose our cultural spaces”.

Koko, Bedroom Bar and Dalston Superstore were among the bars and clubs to take part.

Gudrun Getz

It was organised by Gudrun Getz from Passing Clouds, another venue that closed recently in East London.

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She thinks it’s time for a change in the law to protect clubs.

“If we can get some legislation in place to protect our culture and value, the thing that we as artists and musicians bring to this place, then we will be making a move forward,” she said.

Newsbeat went to see what was happening at Bedroom Bar in East London which joined in the protest.

Caroline and Rahimi

Caroline Forbes was at the night and says venues will be missed when they shut.

“It really upsets me because it’s what makes London great,” she said.

“London is going to go downhill because of it.”

She was particularly sad to see Fabric close.

“It always played the best DJs and everyone up and coming was in Fabric.”

Her friend Rohini Tania agreed that the closure of the venue was a blow to UK clubbing.

“Fabric was such a hub for creativity and dance music,” she said.

“People knew that’s where they could find good dance music.”

Fabric

The issue of nightclub closures has been making headlines recently after Fabric had its licence revoked by Islington Council after two 18-year-olds died after taking drugs in the club.

In its report, the council said: “The extent of the drug use was such that security and staff would have or should have been able to observe not only the use of drugs but also the effect of drug use on a large number of patrons.

“A culture of drug use exists at the club which the existing management and security appears incapable of controlling.”

Around 250 staff will now lose their jobs as Fabric becomes the latest major club to disappear from the UK scene.

Nearly half of the UK’s nightclubs have shut their doors in just 10 years, according to figures seen by Newsbeat back in 2015.

Chris Tofu

Chris Tofu is a veteran club promoter of more than 20 years and he gave a speech ahead of the minute silence at Bedroom Bar.

“The type of music we represent is underground music,” he told Newsbeat.

“It’s different, it’s not mainstream and those are the places that are getting really hit.

“The ones that make an area [good] in the beginning tend to always get thrown out and then replaced with something much more crass and commercial.

“The speed of this is just getting superfast.”

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