Koko Camden: blaze strikes popular London music place

Firefighters are attempting to conserve the popular north London music place Koko, as flames were seen rippling out of its roof on Monday evening.

The London fire brigade said it was contacted us to the scene in Camden, in north London, shortly prior to 9pm. It stated eight fire engines and about 60 firemens were present.

About a 3rd of the roofing system of the bar, which in previous versions was known as The Music Device and Camden Palace, was alight as firemens attempted to conserve the rest of the location.

The previous theatre is covered in scaffolding as part of a remodelling. Georgia Gould, a Labour councillor in the Kentish Town ward and the leader of Camden borough council, tweeted pictures of the burning building.

Heartbreaking watching the Camden Palace/ Koko up in flames this night, a building that holds numerous memories and suggests so much to us in Camden. Incredible how rapidly @LondonFire got under control, we owe them so much for their swift and bold response

 

Labour management hopeful and local MP Keir Starmer added his voice too, tweeting: “Terrible news in Camden tonight. Unbelievable response from our firefighters.”

A 2014 Guardian guide explained Koko as the London location that “bands play when they’re too huge for the clubs and not huge enough for Brixton Academy”. It has actually hosted some of the world’s biggest acts, consisting of Madonna, Ed Sheeran and Prince.


 

The place was due to reopen in spring 2020 after a “significant cutting edge” refurbishment, after the purchase of two nearby buildings.

It initially opened in 1900 and was noted as a Grade II building in 1972. Historic England describes it as having a” in proportion exterior in Baroque pastiche style”. The organisation also fetes the “elaborate foyer” and the “mix of baroque and rococo ornament” inside the structure.

And it notes the plaque of Ellen Terry, the well known turn-of-the-century British starlet who opened the location in its initial guise. In its early years it was utilized to show a large variety of productions from Shakespeare to pantomime, and opera to musical, and later became a movie theater and a BBC recording studio, according to its listing, prior to lastly ending up being a club and gig place.

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