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Ministry Of Sound given lifeline by Boris Johnson

Tim Ingham
Ministry Of Sound given lifeline by Boris Johnson

London mayor Boris Johnson has given Ministry Of Sound a chance to save its world-famous nightclub - by instructing the music company to reach a private agreement with the developer of a nearby tower block.

The story of Ministry's possible closure started in 2009, when plans to build a 41-storey residential tower ten metres from the front of the club in Southwark were announced.

Ministry feared that new residents in would complain about noise, making it "highly likely we will lose our licence and be forced to close".

After Ministry appealed, Southwark Council’s planning committee rejected the development unanimously. However, Boris Johnson personally kept the application alive by calling it in.

Yesterday (November 19), the mayor listened to arguments from both sides, and decided to defer his decision for a month.

Ministry and the developer now have until December 19 to privately negotiate a deal which ensures both the club's long-term security and the delivery of the housing scheme. Noise insulation is likely to be the crux of any agreement.
 
Lohan Presencer, chief executive of Ministry of Sound, told Music Week: "We're encouraged that the Mayor has chosen to adjourn the decision and we're confident  he recognises that the solutions we are putting forward will ensure all parties are happy with the outcome.
 
"We have always said that we can co-exist with a new development and we welcome regeneration in Southwark. We are committed to our local area and neighbouring businesses, as we have been for more than 20 years.
 
"As the Mayor has requested, we will sit down with the developer to work on a mutually agreeable, sustainable solution - one which  will deliver housing for London and safeguard the future of our club."

Last week, Ministry asked Music Week readers to show support for its campaign on Twitter - as the hours ticked down to D-Day for its club.

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