Popular live mu­sic venue shuts its doors

Macclesfield Express - - BARLOW’S BRIEF -

THE popular mu­sic venue is closing its doors for good.

Ron­nie’s Bar moved from its regular spot in Duke’s Court to Mill Street last Septem­ber.

But the venue has strug­gled to pull in the pun­ters and will close at the end of the month.

Owner Ron­nie Rees, 54, said the venue was no longer eco­nom­i­cally vi­able.

He said: “Macclesfield is a dif­fer­ent place than it was four years ago. Aus­ter­ity has taken its toll. To make a venue that size work I need to be fill­ing two or three times a week. That just wasn’t hap­pen­ing. I’ve had to cut my losses.”

Last month Ron­nie’s Bar be­gan run­ning un­der-age club nights again for the first time af­ter three teenagers were hos­pi­talised af­ter tak­ing sus­pected ec­stasy-style drug last Novem­ber.

Mr Rees said: “That sort of ex­pe­ri­ence is ev­ery bar-owner’s worst night­mare. It floored me to be hon­est and left me with a sense of anx­i­ety about how things like that can go out of your con­trol.”

Mr Rees said he will still op­er­ate the Ron Tiki Bar on Mill Street.

He said: “I still be­lieve Macclesfield has a des­per­ate need for a live mu­sic bar but it will take more than one in­de­pen­dent owner to keep this one afloat.”

Mean­while, reg­u­lars are lament­ing the clo­sure of The Cas­tle Inn on Cas­tle Street, which closed last month.The his­toric grade two listed pub was famed for its his­tor­i­cal in­te­rior which in­cludes public rooms, an old bar counter, tap room, tongue-and­grooved wall benches, smoke room with 1920s or­na­ments and Vic­to­rian fire­place. It is recorded in the Na­tional In­ven­tory of His­toric Pub In­te­ri­ors.

The pub was a regular haunt of 1960s rock band The Pur­ple Gang, who played at The Cas­tle at the peak of their ca­reer.

Singer Joe Beard said: “It was a very spe­cial place.”

●» Po­lice want to speak to the man and woman pic­tured in con­nec­tion with a fraud at the co-op store on School Lane, Poyn­ton

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