Socialists take a pop at closure of The Venue

THE closure of Edinburgh live music club The Venue has prompted calls in the Scottish Parliament for more action to preserve popular culture.

Scottish Socialist leader and Lothians MSP Colin Fox has tabled a motion, regretting the sale of the Calton Road venue for redevelopment as flats, offices and an upmarket delicatessen, and calling on the Scottish Executive to take a lead in protecting cultural venues from "the worst ravages of developers".

Mr Fox said The Venue had long been a supporter of both signed and unsigned bands and its closure was a further erosion of the Capital's music scene.

He added: "This is indicative of the increased emphasis placed on development to the detriment of popular culture, which is out of keeping in a city with the reputation of Edinburgh."

The operators of The Venue last month admitted defeat in their search for a new home because of soaring property prices.

The club has staged gigs by bands such as The Proclaimers, The Strokes, Scissor Sisters, Coldplay and Franz Ferdinand. It has also played host to DJs including John Peel, Green Velvet and Jeff Mills. The Venue is due to close its doors for the last time next month.

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