Woking is to have a new live music venue to host touring bands, up-and-coming local acts, literary events and DJ nights.
The Fiery Bird will be housed in 1,000 capacity premises in Crown Square, which is currently home to Quake nightclub. The new venture, which will be run by Phoenix Cultural Centre CIC, is intended to work in partnership with promoters, agents and national networks. The project aims to bring bands and musicians to Woking from around the country, as well as encouraging and promoting emerging local talent. In addition, the centre will offer space for community hire.
Elaine McGinty, director of the Phoenix Cultural Centre CIC, said: “The space needs work done on it and we are looking forward to getting in there and making it work.
“It’ll be an exciting new space for Woking that directly benefits the community and visitors. The transport links here are so good it will be a real benefit to the town to bring touring bands in and invest in our own live music scene.
“We’re going to make this work so Woking has a live music venue again and a future for original live music that it can be proud of.”
The project is community led and will reinvest any profits to benefit Woking’s residents. It has the support of Woking Borough Council, and is applying for grants towards an extensive refurbishment programme. It is hoped new training and employment opportunities for technical trades in creative industries can be offered, as well as artistic support and mentoring to emerging artists and access for disabled performers as well as gig goers.
The Phoenix Cultural Centre volunteer team has been running successful live music events in Woking for several years, including using an empty shop in Goldsworth Road for open mic and feature nights. Earlier this year they organised the inaugural Phoenix Rising, an open-air festival of original music in Woking Park, emerging from the National Our Big Gig community live music festivals organised since 2012.
Anyone who would like to be involved and support the project, by volunteering or donating towards the refurbishment and running costs, should contact the organisers by email at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org