Video: Eerie glimpse inside Doncaster's Karisma nightclub, 20 years after it closed

Its walls and dancefloors once echoed to the sound of hundreds of pop hits and it was the scene of many a drunken night out - but this video gives an eerie glimpse into Doncaster's famous Karisma night club before its transformation into apartments.
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The building, which played host to The Beatles in a previous guise and which was also known as Romeo and Juliets and Seventh Heaven during its spell as a nightclub, was converted to flats back in 2017, losing those memories forever.

The night spot closed down in 2004 and had a short-lived rebirth as Faith - but the venue was then left to fall into ruin for several years befire being ripped out by builders ahead of a new chapter as a series of flats and apartments.

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The place to be seen in the 90s, clubbers would enter via double doors on Duke Street and then either climb endless flights of stairs to the top floor dance floor or, if you had a VIP pass, you could bypass the waiting throng and jump in the lift and cut the queue.

Karisma closed its doors 20 years ago - and this video shows what it looked like shortly before it was transformed into apartments.Karisma closed its doors 20 years ago - and this video shows what it looked like shortly before it was transformed into apartments.
Karisma closed its doors 20 years ago - and this video shows what it looked like shortly before it was transformed into apartments.

Once upstairs, you'd hand over your money and venture into the garishly decorated and dimly lit delights within, with male and female dancers often making endless circuits of a well-trodden path around the dancefloor on the lookout for potential suitors.

There was a popular food bar where sustenance could be gained in the shape of chips and well, not much else really, as well as "VIP" areas with raised seats. In the middle of it all, the DJ would blast out the hits of the day to the seething masses on the sticky dancefloor below.

The Grade II listed building will be known to older generations as the old Co-op store.

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Built between 1938 and 1940 by T H Johnson & Son for the Doncaster Co-operative Society Ltd, the Art Deco style building, christened Danum House, was likened to a ship, cruising down Printing Office Street on its unveiling.

The store went through a variety of guises under the Co-op banner, was home to Doncaster Council's planning department and bargain store TJ Hughes for a time and now houses a variety of shops.

And it was where The Beatles played early in their career, John, Paul, George and Ringo appearing there on August 8, 1962 - one of five occasions the Fab Four played in Doncaster.

In later years, it became Romeo and Juliets, then Seventh Heaven and then Karisma - and it was from that venue motor racing champ James Hunt was famously denied entry for being drunk.

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The fast-living, party hard playboy, who won the F1 World Championship in 1976 always liked a drink or two - and one night in Doncaster in 1989 proved no exception.

By then with his glittering career far behind him, a worse for wear Hunt, in town after winning two rosettes as a bird breeder at the World Budgerigar Championships, arrived at the door of Karisma.

Wearing jeans, he fell foul of the club's dress code and became involved in an altercation with bouncer Ian Butterfield.

Furious at being denied entry, the F1 ace knocked a cup of coffee Butterfield was holding into his face, causing scalding for which was later treated at Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

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Hunt was wrestled to the ground by fellow bouncers and frogmarched to a nearby police car where he was promptly arrested.

The incident made headline news - and came just a few years before his death in 1993.

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