Who are we?
229 is a multi-purpose, live music, entertainments venue which first opened its doors in 1965 as part of International Students House (ISH). 229 alone employs 7 full-time staff, 25+ casuals, a Security team and many freelance sound and lighting engineers. 229 officially started in 2007, but we’ve been running events and playing host to many bands and artists in some form or another since ISH began and we want to carry on doing just that.
ISH is a residential, social and cultural centre for international and British students in central London. We believe every young person should have the opportunity to succeed whatever their background. All profit generated from our many gigs, festivals, club nights and other music related events enable us to provide: Scholarships opportunities for students from less advantaged countries, a safe home and a social programme to enable students to succeed while giving them a place to belong.
Why we might have to close?
Our insurance does not cover us for a world-wide pandemic, so we have no way of making up the lost revenue whilst our doors are closed. We still have large monthly overheads, including rates, insurance and utility bills to pay, but most of all we desperately want to protect the livelihood of all those who work at the venue. There will come a point when we can no longer absorb these costs and so closure may become a consideration. In addition the charity is already suffering due to the loss of revenue normally generated from venue sales and so future scholarships could also be withdrawn.
How can you help and where will your donations go?
We’re asking for whatever you can spare on beer and ticket money that might have gone unspent over the last few weeks. Your donations will help us in the short term, to cover some of our fixed monthly overheads. Long term, we want to ensure that our staff continue to survive this unprecedented time with a job to come back to, as and when we are allowed to reopen our doors. Additionally, we want to make sure we can continue to bring you the best bands in the future, offer artists the best opportunities at the start of their careers and ensure that we can get through the most difficult period live music venues have ever faced. Ultimately, this will then allow us to continue funding scholarships and the charitable side of our business.
If we hit our target, and we can prevent the closure of our venue, everything above the amount we need will be donated to the Music Venue Trust GMV Crisis Fund to protect other venues just like ours, right across the country.