Heaven’s future in jeopardy amid reports of £320k rent increase

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The future of London’s Heaven nightclub is under threat, amid reports that the venue is facing a rent increase of £320,000.

According to the BBC, owners of the storied LGBTQIA+ venue have entered an arbitration dispute with the Charing Cross site’s landlord The Arch Company as a result of a request for an additional £240,000 per year increase — which is on top of a £80,000 rise that was requested in September last year.

The club’s founder and G-A-Y owner Jeremy Joseph confirmed details in an Instagram post yesterday (February 26), insisting that he was forced “to go public” with the dispute to demonstrate “why hospitality is struggling to survive.”

“If you wonder why so many venues are closing. If you wonder why we are losing more LGBT Venues. Look no further than LANDLORDS,” the post reads.”We have been fighting them for five months and they aren’t willing to back down”

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“It’s time to put public pressure on Landlords, this isn’t just about Heaven, this is about every hospitality venue because if our rent goes up, it will increase the rent of other venues because in arbitration, they use other comparable rents to value yours.”

This legally binding arbitration process should enable both parties to reach an agreement without having to go to court, however, Joseph claims the process has already cost the club “nearly £10k in legal fees.”

In a statement seen by Mixmag, a spokesperson for The Arch Company said: “Heaven is a long-term and valued customer and we have been working closely with them to reach an agreement on the market rent for their premises.

“Unfortunately, we have not been able to agree this between ourselves and so an independent third party has now been appointed to help resolve.”

News of the nightclub’s rental dispute comes two months after Joseph announced the closure of G-A-Y late due to “several external pressures” according to Time Out.

Read this next: How The Cost Of Living Crisis Is Impacting Nightclubs And Promoters

The closure was described as a “profound loss for the LGBTQ community in the capital” by Night Time Industries (NTIA) CEO Michael Kill.

Three weeks ago, the BBC reported that “more than half of London’s LGBTQ+ venues closed between 2006 and 2022” according to data by the Greater London Authority.

Read the statement from Heaven nightclub below:

Belle Richardson is Mixmag’s Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter

Written by: Tim Hopkins

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