Passing Clouds given protected status by Hackney Council

Campaigners for Dalston music venue Passing Clouds will have the chance to buy the building after it was given protected status by Hackney Council.

The independent music hub in Richmond Road has been closed since bosses were evicted in August and thousands have joined a campaign to save it.

And now the building has been made an Asset of Community Value by the town hall, meaning should owners Landhold Developments look to sell the building, the community will be given six months to buy it.

The news will be music to the ears of all involved with the venue, which has been supported by artists including Paloma Faith, Gilles Peterson, Norman Jay and even London mayor Sadiq Khan.

Hackney’s mayor Philip Glanville, also an outspoken supporter, announced the decision this afternoon. He said: “I hope this sends out a strong message about the cultural value of our live music venues, and how we as a council will seek to protect them.

“Passing Clouds was a unique venue with an exciting, creative yet community feel to it. In many ways it has become a victim of its own success; venues like it were the catalyst for the resurgence of Dalston’s night life, which has made the area such a profitable place for developers.

“Sadly this doesn’t mean that it will be able to reopen immediately – ACV status only offers groups the opportunity to express an interest in buying a property if the owner plans to sell it – but I hope it serves as a boost to the campaigners and sends out a message to the owners of the building that this venue and the community that developed around it is important and should be considered in any future plans.”

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The venue was in the middle of its 10th anniversary celebrations when bosses were turfed out, and they didn’t go quietly.

After bailiffs changed the locks overnight in June, hundreds of supporters turned out to “reclaim” the building for a few more weeks.

Dozens of people also turned up outside Clerkenwell and Shoreditch County Court to show their support when Landhold applied for an eviction notice.

The landlord bought the venue in September last year in what Passing Clouds have dubbed a “secret sale”.

Passing Clouds have been contacted for comment.