Clubbers devastation over Sidmouth’s only nightclub not getting ‘send off it deserved’

Carinas Nite Club. Ref shs 04-18TI 6549. Picture: Terry Ife

Carinas Nite Club. Ref shs 04-18TI 6549. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Gutted clubbers say they are devastated that they will not be able to give Sidmouth’s only nightclub ‘the send off it deserved’, after its unexpected closure.

Owner Residential Trust Ltd has announced the permanent and immediate closure of Carinas Niteclub.

The Fore Street venue closed at the end of January for an eight-week conversion and revamp, with one half of the building to become a restaurant.

But the company’s director Chris Eccles now said Carinas was no longer a ‘sustainable’ business, as they’d had ‘insufficient real support’ in the form of customers spending money regularly.

He said they would be seeking planning permission to convert the venue into one big bar and restaurant, but thanked all their customers and staff for their support during their ownership.

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The company’s original bid to turn the club into a restaurant was rejected in May 2017 – on account that the town would lose a ‘social gathering facility’ which contributed to its ‘vibrancy and vitality’.

At the time, nearly 300 people signed a petition to stop the application. East Devon District Council then approved a fresh bid for a part-conversion in October.

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Phil Clode, 19, from Sidmouth launched the petition to stop the first proposal in May. After hearing of the closure, he said: “I was shocked and really disappointed – mainly just by the way it’s been done.

“I’m really upset the owners closed the venue and didn’t allow it a proper send off.

“I think it shows a huge lack of respect and compassion towards the locals and their own employees.”

Clubber Laura Southcott took to Facebook to say it was a ‘sad day’ for younger people in the town.

The club’s manager Mandy Patch released a statement on Facebook: “I’m really sorry and deeply saddened it has ended this way and Carinas didn’t get the send off it deserved,” she said.

“I want to send a big thank-you and love to everyone who has supported us through the years.”

The venue’s owners said it would be interested in hearing from any organisations interested in subsidising the club as a community facility.

Will you miss Carinas? To share your memories and party pictures with the Herald, email or contact us on the Sidmouth Herald Facebook page.

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