A promotion company is selling freshers tickets for club nights that aren’t happening
Clubs listed as the event hosts have said the events aren’t going ahead
As eager first years flock to unis, fresh from the results day fiasco, the prospect of actually going out for a big night after months of lockdown is tantalising. It’s the uni experience they had in mind.
They’ll be delighted to see tickets being sold for events up and down the country, promising a September Freshers’ Week recognisable as just that – Freshers’.
Tickets at clubs in cities like London, Nottingham, and Birmingham are being sold for anything from £5 to £20 – all under the Your Freshers Guide banner. Jump around the site and it seems the pandemic isn’t stopping freshers carrying on as normal across the country.
However, after being contacted, several clubs whose names appear on these events tell The Tab the events aren’t happening.
“THE 2020 OFFICIAL LONDON FRESHERS MOVING IN PARTY AT EGG LONDON” looks great. Taking place on Sunday 13th September, it boasts five rooms of music, one of London’s best sound systems, and an outdoor terrace.
Super Early Bird and Early Bird tickets have already sold out. The remaining tickets start at £8 and go up to £22 for an “Exclusive Q-Jump Ticket”.
“The London Freshers Moving in Party is EXTREMELY popular and SELLS OUT every year,” the event’s description says.
The event is one of three happening at Egg for Freshers’ – along with “The Freshers Fun House” and “The Freshers Neon Glow Rave”.
The venue itself, however, told us a different story. Egg London said: “These events won’t be happening and we’ve asked the organisers to take them down immediately.”
In Nottingham, tickets are being sold for five Freshers’ events at the Lacehouse club. However, the club didn’t necessarily know about this, telling The Tab they had looked into socially distanced Freshers’ events, but not decided anything. “We have not spoken to them since the previous freshers week in 2019, We work with them annually, but have not spoken to the regarding this year in detail.
“Of course it can’t be the same as previous years due to the current situation, but we have yet to book them in.”
In Birmingham, Rosie’s, where the “FCK ME ITS FRESHERS” event is listed on the site as part of the “Official Birmingham Freshers 2020 Wristband” being sold, told us: “We do not currently hold any ties with any promoters for the usual Freshers period.”
Pryzm in Newcastle, where tickets are being sold for two events on the site, said they wouldn’t be going ahead. “They had been arranged pre lockdown and won’t be going forward with the current lockdown rules in place,” the club told The Tab.
However, some events are going ahead. Player’s, where the “NEON GLOW RAVE” event is listed, told The Tab the event would be going ahead in accordance with government guidance.
The site boasts that there will be over 1000 people at the event. Player’s say this is the case, “but not at the same time”, as they’ll be running staggered entry. The company behind Player’s also run Olivia’s, who say an event listed for the club is going ahead.
Some events listed carry the following disclaimer, or a variation thereof: “This event is dated as the ORIGINALLY planned dates for the event. With government guidelines still keeping clubs shut at the moment, there is a chance these events will be unable to be held in September. If this is the case we will aim to rearrange our events sometime during the 2020 – 2021 academic year.
“All tickets will still be valid regardless of when the event happens, and if we are unable to run the events at some point this academic year due to government guidelines or being unable to secure a new date, then we will refund all tickets bought. We still recommend securing your ticket now to get a cheaper price & guarantee your spot in the case of reduced capacities, as we expect sales to go crazy as soon as clubs reopen and prices will increase greatly.”
Caroline Kean, a partner at law firm Wiggin, feels the disclaimer doesn’t hold much water. “By going on to say, and if it doesn’t happen on that date, we will put on something else, that doesn’t exonerate them,” she told The Tab. “Because what they’re doing in the first place is relying on a club’s reputation and name to suggest to people that there is a possibility of an event going on on that date, that they should pay money.”
When we contacted Your Freshers’ Guide to find out what was going on, they told us: “We would have to say that the majority of the information above is incorrect. But that is fine – you’re The Tab.”
Despite their assertion, Your Freshers Guide refused to specify which events were going ahead at the advertised venues. In fact, soon after we contacted Your Freshers Guide, a number of the events were changed to remove the venues from their descriptions.
The UoN Moving In Party now has no mention of Lacehouse, instead simply saying “Nottingham”. When we tried to buy tickets, it took us through again to the checkout screen, as before.
Before we contacted YFG:
After we contacted YFG:
The Birmingham Official Freshers’ Wristband now has no mention of Rosie’s – the FCK ME IT’S FRESHERS event now bears no location.
Before we contacted YFG:
After we contacted YFG:
The events at Egg London remain the same, with tickets still on sale. The event at Pryzm in Newcastle now only holds a mention of the club in the event description, and not the tagged location.
The quick changes raise the question of whether the company is now selling tickets for events with no venue. We asked Your Freshers Guide if they had found new venues for these events. We received no answer.
Instead, they promised an announcement to be made to their students, saying “we think it would only be fair to address the students before addressing any external companies / tabloids etc”. We’ll update you with that announcement when it comes.