Venue rescued

Jazz Bar to reopen as not-for-profit enterprise

Jazz Bar
The Jazz Bar shut suddenly in April amid rising costs (pic: Google)

One of Edinburgh’s music venues, The Jazz Bar, will reopen after funds were raised by a social enterprise set up by Nick and Justyna Mushlin, a husband and wife team with decades of experience and deep connections to the club.

When it was announced in April that The Jazz Bar would shut, they took it upon themselves, with help and support from the music community, to purchase the assets.

Their aim was to start a new venture that continued the legacy that the old Jazz Bar had created and nurtured for many years. It has become a staple of the city music scene and the Edinburgh Fringe.

Former staff, sound engineers, and musicians have dug deep to raise enough money to enable The Jazz Bar CIC to acquire the assets, name, and licence.

At the last count a fund raising round on the Crowdfunder platform had raised more than £18,000, half way to its target of £35,000 and enough to carry out essential maintenance quoted at around £10,000 before the bar can reopen.

It would also enable the new owners to partially repay the short term borrowing taken out for the purchasing of assets and licence.

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton said: “The Jazz Bar’s closure in April cut deep into the heart of the city’s cultural landscape, so it is a huge relief to see it reopening under new ownership.

“Sadly, The Jazz Bar is far from the only cultural venue and initiative, such as the Screen Machine and the Edinburgh Filmhouse, to have come under increasing threat on the SNP’s watch.

“The SNP love to masquerade as advocates for Scottish culture. Yet, in reality, they are slashing the culture budget, cutting money from local government and failing to support businesses with the cost of living.

“The near closure of The Jazz Bar needs to serve as a warning sign for the state of Scottish culture under the SNP. We need to see the Scottish Government investing for the future to preserve Scotland’s proud musical, artistic and literary history, and working with the UK Government to help ease the strains on businesses struggling to stay afloat.”

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