The Cellar is a family run, grassroots music venue in the heart of Oxford. We are one of the only truly independent music venues left, and we cater to anyone who wants to have fun and listen to good music. We are all about giving people a unique experience in an experimental and welcoming space, right in the centre of the city.
Dawn Penn at the Cellar by Tomasz Ras
The Cellar is on the verge of closure because new stringent fire regulations have cut our capacity from 150 to 60 people. We need to raise £80,000 over the next 5 weeks to build a new fire exit, or we’ll be closing our doors in December 2018 forever.
We’ve had a tough year. At the end of 2017, we were threatened with closure when our landlords wanted to redevelop our beloved basement club into retail space. 14,000 people signed a petition and over 1000 people lobbied the council in a brilliant campaign to fight the plans. And we won thanks to the public’s incredible support.
In our fight to save The Cellar, we have been placed under huge financial strain, incurring large legal costs. Worse still, since our capacity has been cut, we have lost many of our most popular nights and our promoters have understandably had to go elsewhere with their larger shows.
The good news is that it is possible to increase our capacity by building a new fire exit from The Cellar into Frewin Court. It is major structural work but if we can raise the money, the renovations will improve the space, enabling The Cellar to thrive, not just survive.
Photo by Ian Wallman
We need to raise £80,000 to fund our #CellarForever project. This one-month programme of renovation includes building the new fire escape and supporting the costs of temporary closure, as well as the improvements below:
A new fire exit would have the potential to increase our capacity to over 200 people
- We would remove the bar in the main room, allowing a larger audience area with a better view of the stage.
- The side rooms would become the bar service areas, which would improve the club’s layout.
- If we go beyond our target, we’d love to improve our air conditioning (so that our customers can be even cooler!)
WHY SUPPORT US?
The Cellar is a unique and much-loved venue in Oxford, providing all kinds of wonderful music to local people. Over the years, we’ve supported so many musicians, sound engineers and promoters to hone their craft, and we want to continue operating as a totally independent venue in an increasingly homogenized city centre.
We were overwhelmed by your support for our campaign earlier this year and it became clear how much The Cellar means to so many people. You can read this for yourself here!
Photo by Ben Spear
We are throwing everything at this campaign to raise £80,000 in 5 weeks. We’re asking local businesses, music lovers and anyone who cares about what The Cellar stands for, to support #CellarForever by making a donation and investing in us, for the long-term.
Please donate using the link provided. We’ve got a list of juicy rewards to encourage you to dig deep, and we are massively grateful to everyone who has contributed so far.
In summary, we’d have to agree with Oxford-based band, Glass Animals: “To see The Cellar turned into some retail outlet would be like beating the small heart of the Oxford music scene to a pulp with a pre-made sandwich.”
Please support #CellarForever
Let’s do this.