Popular grassroots music venue in Doncaster faces permanent closure after being sold

Local music enthusiasts are left heartbroken after a popular grassroots music venue in Doncaster that houses Woolpack Live has been sold.

By Rahmah Ghazali
Saturday, 6th February 2021, 3:02 pm

Music Venue Trust, in a statement said, the current venue operators have lost their tenancy, resulting in the permanent closure of the live music venue in those premises.

The charity which acts to protect, secure and improve grassroots music venues said they will now be working with the local community to identify new premises that could be a new home for the venue.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Woolpack Live at Doncaster Market Place

But the loss of the building serves as a reminder to the music industry, the government and the cultural sector that the issue of ownership remains the most significant cause of these closures, they added.

They said: "It isn’t new, we have been discussing it with those stakeholders for six years. This crisis is simply magnifying the problem so we can see it very clearly.

"Ninety three percent of grassroots music venue operators are tenants. They rent the buildings we need for live music from landlords who, very often, don't share our ambition for live music to thrive in our local communities.

"They are invested in bricks and mortar and the income it can generate. Music Venue Trust isn't here to criticise them.

"But we need to have a very public discussion about whether this model of ownership supports creativity, culture or music in the way we all need and want it to."

They said the issue of ownership has been part of the battle to save venues from closure for the last seven years but they hope to work together with the community to save these venues.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.