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Music club reopens after nine months
7:00am Monday 4th February 2013 in News
A MUSIC venue has reopened its doors to Brentwood’s teenagers nine months after it shut.
The Hermit Club, just off Shenfield Road, welcomed back youthful music fans on Friday night for the first time since April last year when the building was forced to close.
Musicians including Paul Simon have walked through the doors of the club.
Following the forced closure, songwriter and music tutor Peter Sills formulated a plan along with friend and former pupil David Greene to present to Essex County Council, which controls the club, and bring the place back to life.
Nine months later, the pair managed to bring bands back to the stage along with space for tuition at the rock school, facilities to learn sound engineering and a recording studio.
Mr Sills said: “When the club closed, I just felt like we could do so much here because I know there are so many musicians and young people in the area who need a venue like this.
“It’s important for musicians because they need a place to express themselves. They need a place to go out and play and get feedback from others. The Hermit gives all these things.”
Starting just after Christmas, volunteers have helped get the building back into shape. “The biggest thing which has come through here is the community spirit,” said Mr Greene.
“The kids who come here are amazing. I’d literally got about 20 coming in to help sort the place out doing a number of jobs from cleaning to stripping wallpaper.
“All the parents have been great as well. Along with the kids, we had a group of ten parents helping out offering whatever they could.”
Playing on the first night back were Amber Herbert, Shoot the Messenger and Cryptic Anger.
Reece Liarmuth, from Cryptic Anger, said: “I’ve been coming here since I was 16 and I had nothing, but this place means everything and it’s great to see it open once more.”
Stephen Castle, county councillor responsible for education and lifelong learning, said he was pleased to see the club open again.
He added: “The plans for the club are exciting and dynamic and will provide a much-needed resource delivering positive activities for young people in Brentwood. “It’s fantastic that the community is driving this forward, developing the services they want to see locally.”