London SE1 community website

London Bridge’s Cable nightclub closes down

London SE1 website team

The Cable nightclub in Bermondsey Street has closed after Network Rail repossessed the premises in connection with the redevelopment of London Bridge Station.

The announcement was made on the club's website on Wednesday: "It is with a huge amount of sadness that we announce Cable has closed with immediate effect.

"We have been forced to close following two years of ongoing legal battles with Network Rail, who took possession of the venue this morning with an entry order, putting us out of business and leaving our 70 staff without jobs.

"This is due to them allegedly requiring the space back for the redevelopment of London Bridge Station. It is an utterly devastating blow to what is a much loved, hugely successful, well respected music venue and media business.

"This is not only a huge loss to the loyal fans and staff of Cable, but to London's clubbing community as a whole. With enormous pride, we delivered the very best talent in an environment that upheld the history of the early SE1 rave scene and supported as many musical styles as possible."

Euan Johnston, director of Cable, said on Friday: "We are totally shocked and devastated that this could have happened. We were assured when we moved in that we would not be affected by the redevelopment and Network Rail have simply changed their minds – the worst thing is there is nothing we can do to prevent it.

"We have invested a huge amount of time and energy developing the space and growing Cable as a brand, not to mention employing 70 staff who now face redundancy."

Network Rail refused to comment on the repossession but rail industry sources insist that the club was fully aware that its space would be required for works relating to the redevelopment of the station.

The repossession of the club by its landlords follows a separate legal tussle between Cable and the Metropolitan Police.

The police ordered an urgent review of the club's licence after an incident on 2 April in which a man was seriously injured.

The review was due to be considered by a Southwark licensing sub-committee on Tuesday morning.

"The victim was attacked by approximately 15 males, during which he was stabbed in the head, chest, armpit and face as well as being bottled across the back of the head," wrote Southwark police licensing officer PC Graham White in his application for the urgent review.

"The males were all ejected and the victim made his own way to hospital where he was found to have fluid around his heart and require surgery to his face.

"Police were not informed by the venue staff and the scene was partially cleaned prior to police arrival."

The owners of Cable dispute the police's account of the incident and claim that it is based on evidence from an unreliable witness.

Cable's barrister Gareth Hughes argued that "this allegation by a known criminal who was severely drunk in hospital at the time that he made such allegations is insufficient, in itself, to result in review proceedings with regard to these premises".

After a lengthy meeting in closed session to receive legal advice, councillors agreed to consider the review of the licence under the normal review procedure rather than the expedited review procedure and resolved to consider the matter in full on Tuesday 20 May.

Matthew Butt, counsel for the Metropolitan Police, warned that the councillors' decision to defer consideration of the case had "no foundation in law".

Since early April the club has had temporary restrictions imposed on its licence to prevent it opening beyond 6am.

This story was updated on Friday 3 May to include extra comment from Cable and to make clear that the club takes issue with the police account of the incident on 3 April

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