Huge show of support as Margate music venue Elsewhere launches fundraiser to save site from closure

Crowdfunder launch at Elsewhere Photo Frank Leppard

Supporters gathered at Elsewhere music venue in Margate last night (October 8)  to launch a crowdfunder aimed at saving the site from permanent closure.

Elsewhere was opened four years ago by owner Alex Barron of Monkey Boy Records in partnership with Sammy Clarke, of Arts Cool, and Ciaran Cliffe, previously from Smugglers Records,. The arts bar and music venue was one of the first businesses to help revive The Centre and encourage others to move in.

But now, after surviving the challenges brought by the covid pandemic, the venue could shut due to the impact of the cost of living crisis.

Supporters turned out to support the venue last night. Among them was Margate Central ward councillor Rob Yates, who said: “Watching Margate come together to support Elsewhere was so heartwarming to see. Hundreds of people from all age groups and backgrounds celebrating and supporting this important venue can’t help but fill you with hope!

“Full credit to Sammy and the Elsewhere team for creating such a well-loved space. I’m confident that they have a successful future ahead of them!”

On the fundraising page it says: “Our beloved grassroots music venue and community arts space is currently facing a severe threat of permanent closure following successive months of diminishing advance ticket and bar sales since April 2022.

Sammy with mayor Heather Keen and deputy mayor Rob Yates Photo Frank Leppard

“These tenuous circumstances for our culture and livelihoods have arisen and are owing to what has been witnessed as a steep, industry-wide downturn in event attendances; a result of the cost of living crisis that has impacted everybody’s spending decisions as we all very understandably choose between buying that gig ticket, record or drink at the bar or keeping on top of our electricity bills – ours have tripled since the beginning of April of this year.

Photo Frank Leppard

“Success in meeting our crowdfunder target will mean that we can secure the future of Elsewhere with the donated funds being allocated accordingly:

  • Pay off outstanding energy, rent, insurance and business rates bills.
  • Retaining our lease and core staffing costs for the foreseeable, during a period in which we will operate the space to a reduced programme.
  • Setting up a CIC (Community Interest Company) to take over the operations of the music venue and arts space. This will allow us access to more funding opportunities than ever before.
  • Use the fallow time afforded from lease and staff retention; to further develop a financially sustainable, people driven, operating model and programme to ensure that Elsewhere’s status as a grassroots music venue and arts space at the core of its community is safeguarded into the future.

“Additional pledges beyond reaching the target of saving Elsewhere in the short term will be used for the venue to retain core staffing costs during a period in which we will operate the space to a reduced programme as we use the fallow time afforded; to further develop a sustainable, people driven, operating model and programme to ensure that Elsewhere as a grassroots music venue and arts space is safeguarded into the future.”

Photo Frank Leppard

A target of £25,000 has been set and some £15,875 has already been raised with £9,500 pledged for a special proof edition of artist Tracey Emin’s lithograph Life Will Never Be The Same (Nor should it)” which has been donated by Tracey and gallery owner Carl Freedman.

Other rewards on offer include special certificates and one year’s membership at Elsewhere.

Elsewhere  has a 200 person capacity and is spread over two stages. The venue focuses on programming a wide range of events, primarily music but also comedy, poetry and workshops. It also hosts events for Prince’s Trust, Open School East and Pie Factory Music, as well as community events like Margate Bookie’s Bookie Slam.

Find the fundraiser by clicking here


  1. Ok I thought it looked like the precinct.

    I didnt think there were any shops directly opposite peacocks. I thought the precinct was opposite and shops on the side

  2. It needs for all of these people to patronise the business every week in order to make it viable – not for it to be sustained by charitable donations alone.

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