The Orange Rooms fish are being freed

The tropical fish in the tanks at Orange Rooms are to be re-homed after students deemed their habitat “inappropriate”. You may have been too drunk to notice before but the Bedford Place nightclub, Orange Rooms, […]


The tropical fish in the tanks at Orange Rooms are to be re-homed after students deemed their habitat “inappropriate”.

You may have been too drunk to notice before but the Bedford Place nightclub, Orange Rooms, houses tropical fish among the drunk students, DJs and over-sized burgers.

The fish have been in Orange Rooms for 13 years now, since the opening of the bar. It is the Pacu fish that live in the tanks upstairs that have caused the most concern.

After seeing the fish in Orange Rooms while on an EngSoc social, Corinne Dugdale, Treasurer of the RSPCA society, decided to take action.

Corinne, a third year English student, described the issue of the Pacu fish:

The fish appear lifeless, staring straight ahead. There is nothing else in the tank – no distractions, places for the fish to hide.

Orange Rooms fish 1

Corinne said seeing the fish confined in a tank far too small for them “distressed” her. She went on to say:

I was outraged and distraught, I had an emotional breakdown in Orange Rooms. The fish are mistreated and this is wrong. Animals should not be used as entertainment unless they are in appropriate habitats.

Orange Rooms fish 2

Corinne has asked other people what they think about the fish:

Even my meat/fish eating housemate thought it was awful – proving the issue more universal. I asked people in the venue what they thought about it – people either had not noticed the fish or were distressed by them – thus, the fish seemed to be adding no value to Orange Rooms.

Corinne got 50 signatures on her petition in three days, proving that it is a hot topic.

Chloe Adams, Marketing Director at Orange Rooms told us:

We were trying to rehome them before Corinne started her petition, because they have started to outgrow their surroundings. We contacted places like Marwell and Aquatic Centres, but they can’t take them for new quarantine laws.

Corinne believes that the issue doesn’t end at the Pacu fish:

But for all fish present, the setting is inappropriate – the fish are used for entertainment purposes which is rather immoral. The bass music is far too loud, although Orange Rooms have informed me that tanks are ‘bass proof’.

Customers repeatedly tap tanks – no restrictions on that. Overall not a healthy situation for living creatures. It’s bad for the image Orange Rooms portray – immoral and lacking in human conscience.

Chloe from Orange Rooms has reassured us about the welfare of the fish:

We’ve had the RSPCA come and observe the fish on a few occasions and they were happy that the fish were out of danger and well cared for. The glass is re-enforced so it is essentially ‘bass-proof’, and we have a professional aquatic company who come and clean the tanks and condition the water once a week.

In fact, in the 13 years we’ve had them, we’ve racked up a whopping £42,000 on the care and welfare of our fish – they are a part of the Orange Rooms family after all!

Orange Rooms fish 4Orange Rooms do agree that the setting is no longer appropriate and have agreed to try to re-home the Pacu fish.

Corinne is “ecstatic”, but she still has a long way to go:

I need help finding a suitable home for these Pacu fish so they can be moved ASAP. They are tropical fish who need a tropical tank of over 20 degrees, they can’t be kept in an outdoor pond. Please contact me if you know of anywhere I can ask – aquariums or various garden centres.

Tatiana Sieff, President of RSPCA  Soc, told us:

I love fish but it’s awful seeing them so cramped in Orange Rooms. The poor Pacu fish look miserable – imagine living in those teeny tanks for 13 years! Corinne has done a fab job in convincing the club to set them free, now we’re just looking for a nice tropical home for them.

If you know of anywhere that will take the Pacu fish, or if you want more information, please email [email protected]

What do you think about the fish in Orange Rooms? Let us know in the comments!