The Leadmill Sheffield: Insider suggests deal has been struck ahead of music venue's 'eviction' date tomorrow
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But an industry insider has told The Star they believe a deal has probably been struck between the legendary nightclub and the freeholder. Dozens of gigs have been lined up beyond Saturday, March 25, when The Leadmill was due to be given its marching orders, and there is not believed to be any danger of those events having to be cancelled or moved elsewhere.
The Leadmill revealed last year how it had been told by the building’s freeholder, Electric Group, that it would have to leave when its 20-year lease expired on March 25, 2023. Electric Group’s boss Dominic Madden told The Star back then how it planned to take over the venue, on Leadmill Road, in Sheffield city centre, and spend around £1 million refurbishing it to secure its long-term future as a bastion of the live music scene.
Neither party has been willing to speak to The Star in recent months about the venue’s future. When contacted today, an Electric Group spokesperson said it had ‘no comment’ to offer at this stage. The Leadmill has so far not responded to numerous requests by The Star for an update, even to reassure ticketholders for upcoming events, despite the uncertainty.
One industry insider, who asked not to be named, told The Star: “I believe it’s likely some sort of agreement has been reached.” They were not able to say what that deal might be and what it means for the future of the venue, which opened in 1980 and has staged legendary gigs by the likes of Pulp, the Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Oasis, The Stone Roses and Manic Street Preachers, to name just a few.
What have The Leadmill and venue’s freeholder said previously about its future?
The Leadmill, which describes itself as Sheffield’s longest running live music venue and nightclub, is currently advertising events all the way up to March 21, 2024, when the BAFTA-winning comedian Iain Stirling is due to appear there.
Electric Group bought the property on Leadmill Road from MCR Properties for £600,000 in 2017. Mr Madden previously said he hoped to keep the name upon taking over and was seeking legal advice about whether that would be possible.
The Leadmill has consistently said the club is much more than the bricks and mortar, and its general manager Ian Lawlor told The Star back in April last year how the team there planned to strip the venue back to the ‘derelict flour mill’ they took over if they were evicted.
The venue’s #WeCantLoseLeadmill campaign has received national and international attention, with some of the biggest names in music and comedy lending it their support, including the Arctic Monkeys and Eddie Izzard. More than 46,000 people signed a petition launched by The Leadmill to get the Government to suspend landlords’ powers to evict tenants until a Government review has been completed but the Government responded that it had no plans to do so.
The Leadmill was recently shortlisted for Music Week‘s ‘Grassroots Venue: Spirit of the Scene’ award and called on people to show their support by voting ahead of the March 31 deadline.