Nightlife in Chichester: readers speak out and express their views

Sheiks Nightclub is the closest nightclub for Chichester residents despite being almost seven miles away
Sheiks Nightclub is the closest nightclub for Chichester residents despite being almost seven miles away

“Chichester has been allowed to die and now desperately needs an injection of energy.” This was just one of the reactions from our Facebook readers on our recent article on nightlife in Chichester.

Last week we published a story that listened to the views of the community, a councillor, business owners and the team behind a hopeful planning application on their thoughts of existing nightlife in Chichester and the reaction speaks for itself.

We received a total of 126 comments on one socialised post of the story on Facebook where one reader, Brenda Robinson, said: “Chichester has been allowed to die and now desperately needs an injection of energy. Nightlife is needed where there’s a university and residential college.”

Reader Christopher Green, who shared a similar point of view, said: “What Chichester needs is a cracking late night venue designed to attract both top name bands and DJs, floors and stages for dancing and performance, with bars and eateries.

“Happily entertained people don’t typically cause problems.”

Many comments on the social post referred to councillor Martyn Bell’s comments in which he said: “I think it is vital for the city to have more thriving entertainment between the hours of 5pm and 7pm but that should be provided by local restaurants and pubs, putting a nightclub in Chichester would simply be a recipe for anti-social behaviour.”

One reader who got in touch with us to get his view across on these comments was Labour councillor Kevin Hughes, who said: “Councillor Bell’s negative comments about provision for young people are disappointing.

“The principle of a successful event venue is sound but it seems that anything outside of what is regarded as normal for Chichester is immediately rejected by some people.

“The basic concept of a decent music venue is a good one and it should be taken as read that a university city needs one.”

A letter we have been sent which contrasts many of these views was one from reader Guy Knight who expressed: “There are a number of late night music venues in South Street already and this area is becoming a no go zone over weekends in the evenings and late at night and is typically full of drunks from early evening.

“It’s a sad to see that even Pizza Express needs bouncers.

“Chichester District Council keeps granting licences in Chichester, Woodies being the latest, and then wonder why local residents object.

“There is no protection of local residents.

“Why not differentiate Chichester and make it a classy and pleasant place to visit.”