The South Coast dance music community hub will say goodbye with 13 parties.
In a statement on the club's Facebook page, the Junk team announced on Friday that the club will be closing at the end of the summer and saying goodbye to the South Coast music community with a series of 13 parties. They said, "The industry has changed and moved on and so must we. We've had to stand down as an underground venue in the city as it simply isn't a viable option anymore at the level we operate and with the increase in running costs for the venue year on year."
One of the major factors behind Junk's closure after the summer is its expensive legal battle with the local council to keep its license over a 2016 incident. The club eventually won its appeal to reverse the police's punishment of early closing times. "The whole ordeal add[ed] up to a cost of circa £200K in losses," Junk's statement said.
The statement also touches on how the Junk team perceive the scene to have changed over the years: "The culture of UK dance music has changed dramatically and become far more overground than we ever imagined it would be and that is reflected in the number of people seeking out an alternative option. Events are far more about the spectacle and filming the DJ booth and less about the music."
The official closing date will be September 15th, with lineups for the final 13 parties to be announced. (This bank holiday weekend you can catch Shanti Celeste and Peach on Sunday, May 27th.) After the club closes its doors, Junk will live on as promoter and continue to put on parties throughout Europe and overseas. Junk's Southampton location will be taken over by a new management and will be renovated.
Luca Pilato, director of Junk, told Resident Advisor about how this news has been received in the community over the weekend: "We've had an overwhelming response from the community, with hundreds of people leaving memories or messages of thanks [and] good luck to us, [including] a lot of people who appear to have moved on from the city, but who still hold it close to their hearts. So it very much validates our decision to move Junk to a more external touring brand and take it to them."
Photo credit: Alex Paterson