Gay club set for Boardwalk

Exterior of the Boardwalk
Exterior of the Boardwalk

The former Boardwalk live music venue in Sheffield city centre is due to reopen in the spring as a nightclub and bar that will be “a new home of Sheffield’s gay scene”.

After being closed for more than three years, the upper section is being turned into Fuel, which revives a club that closed six years ago in Eyre Street, near Moorhead.

The lower section will be a bar called Twist.

An attempt to quickly revive the place at the corner of Snig Hill and Bank Street, as a live music venue and real ale bar failed to materialise, and there was speculation the premises could be turned into a restaurant.

Now there is the prospect of “one of Sheffield’s most outrageous nights out” after more than a year of lease negotiations and a deal to bring it out of voluntary administration.

Operations manager Jason Turner, said: “We’re delighted to be turning this two floor gem of a venue into the new home of Sheffield’s gay scene.”

Fuel manager David Robinson said: “I’m so excited to be heading up the team bringing back Fuel to Sheffield. We’ve learned a lot since Fuel was here last, and our focus will be the same fun entertainment - featuring drag queens and wild entertainers.

“This will be accompanied by some great DJ talent, playing the best music alongside some quality products.”

The Boardwalk took over from The Black Swan and later The Mucky Duck as one of the city centre’s best-known live music venues.

Owned by Admiral Taverns, it closed in November 2010 after 15 years of showcasing local and national bands.

Preparations for reopening include applications to the council for a licence that would allow it to make changes to the layout and to offer drink and entertainment until 6am.

David Robinson said: “I’m confident this will be one of Sheffield’s most outrageous nights out!”

Venue put city on music map

The Boardwalk maintained a tradition for live music dating back to the 1960s.

Joe Cocker performed there, The Clash gave their first performance there and it offered an early stage for the likes of Arctic Monkeys.

Many of the Boardwalk concerts were run by Chris Wilson, who has moved them to The Greystones.

The north’s most famous gay quarter is in Manchester.