Legendary Glasgow venue The Arches to re-open after eight years

Glasgow venue The Arches has announced it is re-opening eight years after it lost its license.

The legendary Scottish nightclub shut its doors in 2015 after Glasgow’s licensing board imposed a midnight closing time, following police complaints about drug abuse and disorder.

Organisers said nine club nights would run from October 21 and include sets from high-profile DJs. The line-up will be announced on Tuesday, and it has been hinted that some of them are Scottish and had played the venue before.


Tom Ketley, founder of events organiser Watchtower, told BBC Scotland the project was designed to give Glasgow back “one of its sleeping giants”.

Anna Calvi
Anna Calvi performing at The Arches in 2014. Credit: Ross Gilmore

He said: “This project is of huge cultural significance for music in Glasgow, Scotland and beyond. Seeing the unfortunate closure of numerous venues in recent years has been hard on the industry.

“The venue’s history is renowned, and it holds a special place in people’s hearts, so we know that today’s news will mean so much to so many.

“Glasgow is legendary for having one of the best crowds in the world and our aim is to champion that by attracting dance music fans from all over the UK and beyond.”

Established in 1991, The Arches was renowned as a “powerhouse” of Scotland’s electronic music scene and was said to have helped to launch the careers of numerous famous Scottish acts.


Its initial closure was brought about when, in the space of a month, a woman was found unconscious in the venue and police officers recorded 26 separate drug and alcohol related incidents.

The venue was pushed into administration by Glasgow city council’s decision to “vary” the license, meaning it had to close by midnight. Tens of thousands signed a petition to reinstate the licence, which was backed by 400 cultural figures including Makar Liz Lochhead, Irvine Welsh and members of Mogwai, Belle & Sebastian and Franz Ferdinand.