Events at Studio Spaces

P1060900I have had a couple of emails from Pennington Street residents about a series of dance events being hosted by local business, Studio Spaces, this autumn.

When I got wind of the events schedule, posted online a week or two ago, I wanted to see how the first event was being run so walked past it (incognito) at both 8.30pm and around midnight. I also drove past on Saturday night and there seemed to be no trouble. There were friendly marshals on both ends of Pennington Street, and the atmosphere was in no way tense or unpleasant.

Nevertheless, I asked to meet Yuval, the owner of Studio Spaces, on Friday to discuss his plans for the business and to build a good working relationship in case I got any concerned emails from residents.

Yuval advised me that they have five members of the security team whose job it is to ensure that all guests are directed down the non-residential streets so that neighbours are not disturbed. He also advised me that he sent information to nearby residents with a telephone number to call on the night to report any problems and also contact details if any residents wished to discuss their concerns at any other time.

This correspondence can be found below and I advise any residents who have problems to report on the night of any of the events to use the number in the letter:

Hydra@Spaces_Residents Letter_Telfords Yard_Aug 2014_v4

Yuval wishes to emphasise to Wapping residents that Studio Spaces is not becoming a club and they have no desire for that. He’s trying to diversify the business’ income stream and the events will run to December.

I also paste below information provided by Yuval about when the events were granted permission, and the steps that have been taken (such as sound proofing) to reduce any disturbance. I hope this information is helpful.

Best wishes,

Julia

Cllr Julia Dockerill, St Katharine’s & Wapping

Studio Spaces originally applied for an extension to the premise license in the spring of 2013 and this was turned down at the hearing on the 30th May 2013.   At this point Studio Spaces and ourselves The Hydra agreed to work together on all future events at the studio and in doing so we also agreed with the local authorities that the studio would not be available for hire to any external 3rd party promoters.   Our aim in doing this was to bring a consistent high level of safety and integrity to every event taking place at the studio.

With the result of the hearing in mind during the period after the 30th May 2013 the studio cancelled all late night events and took on board all of the concerns raised.   In the months that followed the studio worked to address every one of the points raised in the hearing and particular attention was paid to:

  • Venue entrance and exit policies.
  • Full sound proofing of the building.
  • Review of all security and operational procedures.
  • The public’s safety.

By the autumn of 2013 with the new measures in place we undertook 8 late night events at the studio and in that period we did not receive any complaints.   It was at this point that the studio reapplied for a limited extension of late night events, there were no objections to the application so in January 2014 the extension to the license was granted.

In January 2014 the studio started to plan its year ahead and decided to operate only a small number of events until we were confident that we were fully equipped to manage the events properly and within the guidelines of the licensing objectives.   A sound proofing consultant was consulted and further building works were undertaken.  The studio also sought the professional advice from an established security assurance and risk mitigation provider called GHT Global (http://ght-global.com/eng/home).  As an organisation that has experience with managing large events (Twickenham Stadium / Wembley Arena) as well as advising the Government’s policy for late night venues, we have carried out all of their recommendations and restructured the entire events business to operate to two values which are:

  • Safety
  • Positive impact to the community

If anyone would like more information on this please let me know and we can provide all policy, procedures and show our systems which exist to make sure these values become a reality.

In addition to the above our event manager this month sent a letter by post to every resident on the street letting them know our plans and providing them with a phone number which they can contact at any time should they have a concern or complaint.  Our commitment to our residents is that we will act on any complaint immediately. 

The Time Out article was misleading as we hoped it would be a positive endorsement for the studio and its community and demonstrate that we are here to work with our residents and add value to the area by being featured in one of the cities most well known publications.  We do understand that reading that article may be of concern for people living nearby, especially when the journalist unfortunately decided to describe the venture as a ‘beast’.

The authorities have our word that we are not looking to increase the number of late night extensions available to us.  We have spent the last 18 months making improvements to the building and reaching our to our community in every possible way.  We are always here to address any issues or concerns, Yuval in particular has gone to great lengths to make sure the Studio’s photographic and event business is a positive addition to the street and as always we appreciate the support we receive.

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