A farewell letter to The Duchess

It’s time to pay homage to Middleton’s finest

Dear The Duchess,

I’ve heard you’re closing down this summer, what’s with that?

I know we haven’t seen enough of each other recently, but I just want you to know that you’ll be missed. From the loss of Prince to now more royalty, 2016 has been unforgiving and cruel. Anyway, here’s how we should remember The Duchess, and what happens when you cascade down the red meandering steps and past the barrage of band posters.

It’s Phats! The Duchess is the humble abode of the (phat) Phat Friday’s. Its appeal resonates with those who don’t have enough gum for Blackbox, yet would prefer to sidestep the locals at Koh. In fact, what you’ll find at Phat’s is just ‘old school Hip Hop & RNB anthems cut with booty shaking future classics’ (their words not mine).

Classic Club Photo

Feeling thirsty? Feel the humidity sobering you up? It’s okay, there’s not ONE but TWO bar area offering surprisingly affordable alcoholic beverages and quicker than other clubs. Royal service from The Duchess.

And it’s still bloody hot. But have no fear, The Duchess’ industrial fans are here. Think of them as cheering you on in the middle of the dance floor (hehe). Anyway, the fans do swirl some much needed air into this underground bunker.

There’s too many qualities to mention. From the sellotape sticky floors, Saw trap-esqe toilets and random cargo net everywhere- all these endearing features contribute to The Duchess being York’s best club/gig venue. Moreover, we will miss opportunities to fully know Views or Lemonade, and with it the prospect to get in formation to such bangers.

This isn’t a GIGgle, we’re losing a venue

But to many it’s more than just a club night, it’s actually a decent gig venue. If you’re as #edgy as me, you’ll be aware that you could see a plethora of national and local acts on your door step. It’s low ceilings allow the sound to permeate through the venue, and make acts incredibly loud. With the Duchess going we’re losing one of the major venues in York’s rather sparse live music scene.

Anyway, when you’ve finally had enough of Middleton’s finest, you rise from the ashes and venture back up the red stairs, you inhale a huge sigh as the humidity blanket has finally been lifted. Was the air always this fresh outside? Is it normal to sweat this much? Am I okay?

Consequently you need food. Now, I’ve always been uneasy with food outlets that make a claim in it’s name. For instance, Pizza Express is not always the quickest. Yet thankfully, before I grass up YUMMY CHICKEN to the Advertising Standards Authority- their food is surprisingly decent. The first bite is a grease tinged euphoria, and the resulting mouthfuls put you into a chicken induced coma. Without The Duchess, will we ever trek to Yummy Chicken again?!!!

As you wander outside the outlet without fail there’s three types of people; someone sobbing on the floor, someone running in the road and someone throwing up. It’s the inevitability of Phats, you know what you’re getting- and that’s why it should be your Friday night of choice. Phat’s will be moving venue, but it won’t be the same without The Duchess.

How the new development will look.

Okay admittedly the concrete complex where The Duchess sits is an eye sore. Aesthetically the demolition of the 1960’s architecture in favour of something more modern would be welcomed. But what do modern buildings lack? You guessed it, character. I suppose it’s like Derwent, yes it’s buildings have seen better days, but it would just look a tad odd if it wasn’t there. Like day without night, or an NUS without controversy – now the York will now be without The Duchess.

Goodbye my lover,

The Tab