Top London DJ Judge Jules praises NI venue as‘best place in the world for atmosphere’ as nightclub reveals it has closed its doors for the last time - heartbreak echoed online by legions of fans
A nightclub which has welcomed thousands of NI clubbers through its doors has announced it is closing.
In an online post Coach nightclub in Banbridge said: “It is with a very heavy heart that the directors of Coach nightclub have been left with no other option but to permanently close.
“The ongoing Covid pandemic together with no foreseeable opening date for the nightclub industry has left the business in an untenable position.
“The institution that is Coach has seen your generations through our doors, thousands of friendships formed, many marriages and even a few babies born.
“Tiesto to Nicky Romero, Pete Tong to Laid Back Luke, Timmy Trumpet to W&W, Eddie Halliwell to John O’Callaghan, Mella Dee to Hannah Wants.
“The list goes on and on. The music has always been at the heart and soul of Coach and we have been honoured to host these acts for you.”
Speaking this morning on the BBC, Judge Jules said that Coach and Kelly’s in Portrush were leading venues for DJ’s.
He said: “People like their music a bit faster in Northern Ireland, with the risk of crass generalisation. You pitch the tracks up at least 10 per cent faster than you’d be playing them in equivalent venues around the world.”
The statement from Coach online added: “Coach has formed a part of many of our upbringings and, for lots, was the first venture to a night out on the town.
“The first Coach Wednesday of summer when the exams finished will long be a memory to cherish with the promise of long summer nights ahead.
“Christmas meetups with friends usually started with our St Trinian’s night, a few days off then back for Boxing Night and New Year’s Eve as well.”
The message on Coach Facebook page ends with: “For each and every one of these great nights, one thing was always the same when the lights came up at the end of the night. The crowd always chanting one more time.
“But not this time.”
Also speaking this morning on the BBC, Coach Director Victoria Patterson spoke of her concern for the nightclub industry amid the ongoing pandemic.
But when asked if there was any chance the venue could reopen in the future she said: “Never say never. Naturally right now we’re feeling very deflated, pretty gutted to be honest, but it is strange times for everyone in business, across the world. Fingers crossed, you never know. I’ll leave it at that.”
After management at Coach revealed the venue was closing yesterday on social media their Facebook page was littered with expressions of heartbreak from former patrons. Some of them said:
Keith Fairgrieve - ‘The Coach was definitely a right of passage. I had my first big night out there 33 years ago, when it was a place of great musical and fashion diversity. Great memories.
Such a sad loss to Banbridge as The Coach was ingrained in its culture’.
Judith Farrell-Rowan - ‘This is a really moving eulogy to an institution of nightclubbing in Northern Ireland. A sad day for us all. We have such great memories of The Coach, from both the DJ box and the dancefloor. Sending love from Eddie and I to all the team. The Coach has been in good hands over the many years’.
Glenn Speers - ‘So sorry to hear this. The Coach was my first regular night out way back in 1984. You guys have been a rite of passage for generations of young men and women for years. So many happy memories of the place. So sad’.
Chris McCabe - ‘A sad day. What a club this was. Some amazing nights were had in the coach. Hopefully be back open again in better days’.
Kirsty Tedford - ‘End of an era! Spent many nights here from 15 up to about 22, saw tiesto, and too many great DJ’s to name... had my 21st here at the beach party, used to go loyally every weekend... sad to see it go’. ❤️
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