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15,000 Join The Fight To Save London’s Astoria

LONDON (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — London music fans have banded together to fight the possible closure of one of the city’s most legendary clubs, collecting more than 15,000 signatures on a public petition.

The historic Astoria in Soho is part of a block slated to be converted into flats and shops, after being sold for £23.75 million by Compco Holdings to Derwent Valley.

The 2,000-capacity club has hosted the Rolling Stones, Nirvana, Oasis and Blur as they ascended to superstardom. Modern alternative acts Arctic Monkeys, Primal Scream, the Streets and Wolfmother have all played the venue within the past 12 months.

The Astoria is currently under lease to Live Nation-owned Mean Fiddler until 2008, but the company claims it is powerless to stop any redevelopment of the venue.

“It’s a great venue, with its capacity and history. A lot of very cool bands have played there in the past. People attach themselves emotionally to music and I’m sure they have the same affinity with venues,” Live Nation’s Christine Gorman told The Guardian.

“We have a long-term lease with them and we are very happy to operate from there and work with the owners of the actual building. We have no say as to what their plans are. Our aim is to provide the best possible entertainment for the consumer. We can’t get involved in other areas, especially when we are not the ones making the ultimate decision.”

The venue also hosts the city’s best-known gay club night, G-A-Y, which has hosted performances by pop acts including Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Gloria Gaynor, the Spice Girls and Christina Aguilera. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers