Thousands bid to save famous Highbury music bar where Libertines and Hot Chip performed

MP Emily Thornberry and campaigners at the Buffalo Bar

MP Emily Thornberry and campaigners at the Buffalo Bar - Credit: Archant

More than 5,000 people have backed a campaign to save a venue that has seen the likes of the Libertines, Keane, Hot Chip and the Kooks grace its stage.

The Buffalo Bar, in Highbury Corner, has been dishing out live music to eager punters for the last 14 years, but a change in ownership could lead to its eviction.

But concerned staff, regulars and even Emily Thornberry, MP for Islington South and Finsbury, met up at the venue on Saturday to join forces to protect the place,

Sophia Wyeth, a regular at the bar, said: “It’s such a special place. Despite the fact it’s an authentically cool rock and roll bar it’s really friendly and inclusive.

“Not only do they have a lot of great bands on, they also host Salsa nights, a Christian hip-hop event – there’s things for everyone.

“The outpouring of support has been amazing. About 1,000 people a day have been signing the petition. That’s pretty good for somewhere with a capacity of 150.”

Ms Thornberry said: “It’s been going for years and some very important bands started there. It sounds like there is quality music with a good atmosphere.

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“I’m far too old to go to places like this, and when I was contacted about it it was the first time I’d heard about it.

“I’ve heard of lots of other bars in the area because people complain about them. The fact it’s been around 14 years, opening late, and no one has complained to me is remarkable. I’ve written to the leaseholders and hopefully they’ll come round. It’s the sort of place we need in Islington.”

So far the petition has gathered 5,258 signatures.

No one from leaseholders County Estate Pubs was available for comments as the Gazette went to press.

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