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by Ed Keeble

Staff petition to keep the Edinburgh Picture House as live music venue

Wetherspoons plan to turn venue into a 'superpub'

 

Staff petition to keep the Edinburgh Picture House as live music venue

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Staff at the Edinburgh Picture House have begun to petition against chain J.D. Wetherspoons' plans to turn the venue into just another terrible high street boozer.

The latest in a long line of historic venues, the Edinburgh Picture House is set to follow in the footsteps of great venues such as the Astoria, The Mean Fiddler and maybe the Ministry of Sound, after being bought out with plans of no longer being a music venue. However, staff have chosen to hit back at pub chain Wetherspoons by petitioning the brand to keep at as a live music venue.

Staff member Callum Mouat writes: "As both a musician and a member of bar staff, I am devastated to hear that my beloved place of employment and a key music venue in Edinburgh city centre has been sold of to become a Wetherspoons. The last thing this city needs is a key music venue, as well as the Edinburgh Music scene to be tarnished!

"I refuse to stand by and watch decades of live music history be tarnished all in the name of a burger and a pint for £6!" continues Callum. "Without the Edinburgh Picture House, That band that you've waited ages to see will be through in Glasgow, resulting in increased costs for music lovers who now have to leave events early in order to catch the last bus or train at ridiculous o'clock for around £10/£15 extra."

So far Amanda Palmer has signed the petition to keep the venue open and Frank Turner that he was "sad" to hear that the venue was closing. At the time of writing (December 15)  the petition has amassed 9,136 signatures.

A spokesperson from Wetherspoons has responded with the following statement: "Our aim is to develop it into a Wetherspoon pub, though at present there is no opening date. We do not have live music in any of our pubs, so it is extremely unlikely that live music will continue once it reopens. However, we are always prepared to listen to the ­arguments and to discuss it further." 

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