Midnight misery as Fringe venue’s ‘thumping eighties playlist’ keeps student residents awake

STUDENTS living in a block near a popular Fringe venue have complained of “pounding” music going on into the early hours of the morning – despite the advertised show ending shortly after midnight.

David Hume Tower in central Edinburgh. Picture: Wikimedia Commons
David Hume Tower in central Edinburgh. Picture: Wikimedia Commons

Residents in flats opposite the David Hume Tower raised noise complaints with council officers and bosses at the University of Edinburgh after becoming “sleep-deprived” by a “thumping eighties playlist” emanating from a makeshift nightclub in the building.

The venue, which forms part of the Assembly Festival Studios venue, has been converted into 
a retro club called The 
Flick as part of a performance by drag queen Diane Chorley.

Local residents have argued the event breaches licensing agreements, however council sources insist the event is acting within existing rules.

One postgraduate student living in the block told how she had “not slept in two weeks” while the shows were on, adding residents were not consulted about the event.

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    She told the Evening News: “We all understand that it is the Fringe and there are events going on at all times, but when something is advertised to finish at half past midnight and it is still going on hours later, it starts to wear you down.

    “There seems to be a very convoluted process to actually make a complaint. I complained to the council, but obviously there is a long internal process and then you go to the university, who tell you that they rent the venue out, so it is the responsibility of whoever is putting the event on.”

    She added: “It does seem like the university has no idea what is going on in any of their buildings during the Festival.”

    A council spokesperson said officers had investigated the complaint, however found the show was not in breach of any licensing laws. However, the local authority acknowledged advice had been passed on to the performers on how to quieten parts of the show.


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    Nik Whybrew, operations director of Assembly Festival said: “During the festival season we are in constant communication with all local stakeholders to ensure that the Festival is a great environment for all involved. We work closely with the City of Edinburgh Council to make sure we operate within agreed guidelines and are proud of our track record of working with the local community.”