Iconic London venue Brixton Academy to re-open with a series of “test events”

Brixton Academy
(Image credit: Joseph Okpako/WireImage))

London's iconic Brixton Academy venue has been allowed to re-open... providing that it meets 77 'extensive and robust' conditions to ensure public safety.

Following a five day hearing, Lambeth Council announced on Friday (September 15) that the venue can reopen. The venue's licence had been temporarily revoked, following a tragic incident in mid-December last year where two women - gig-goer Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, and Gaby Hutchinson, 23, who worked as a dog handler - died during a gig featuring Afrobeats singer Asake.

Back in April, the Metropolitan Police had urged Lambeth Council to revoke the licence completely.

A statement from the Academy Music Group expressed thanks at the Council's decision.

It reads: “Over the past nine months the venue’s importance to the local community and the live music scene in the UK has been made clear through first-hand professional testimony, campaigns, and petitions as well as economic assessments demonstrating the financial impact to the surrounding area caused by the closure.

“Academy Music Group is determined to learn all appropriate lessons from the night of December 15, 2022. Working at a senior level with experts across all disciplines, AMG presented a comprehensive, multi-faceted response for the licensing authorities to support their case for the safe and secure reopening of the venue.

“We appreciate having had the opportunity to present these detailed proposals and revised licence conditions at the hearing and we are very grateful they met with the approval of the Licensing Sub-Committee.”

 A timeline for the venue's re-opening will be announced soon.

The Metropolitan Police also issued a statement in regards to the decision, stating that it plans to “work with the applicant and Lambeth Council to ensure the public can once again enjoy events at the Academy – but in an environment where their safety is paramount.”

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.