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Cheese & Grain is back in business and ‘stronger than ever’

The Cheese & Grain has announced plans to reopen this month, alongside plans for a number of ‘big name’ performances in 2021. 

The popular venue has told Frome Times that it is gearing up to reopen its cafe and bar by the end of the month, and is hoping to announce a number of “socially-distanced” gigs for November and December.

And for its 2021 line-up, the venue has announced 21 huge shows, including performances from household names such as Kosheen, DJ Scott Mills, Levellers, Arrested Development, Hang Massive, Craig Charles, Goldie Lookin’ Chain, and The Feeling.

The not-for-profit social enterprise and “proudly” independent venue says, “The Cheese & Grain is coming back stronger than ever in 2021 making it our best year yet.”

The Cheese & Grain’s hospitality manager, Graeme Barry, has also praised the support of the community, whose “patience” and support has helped the venue reopen.

“The support has been very positive,” said Graeme. “People are telling us all the time that they hope that we reopen, and that they don’t lose the venue. We have been very chuffed with the response.

“A lot of people have donated the value of their ticket to help us stay open and reopen.

“And those people that have been waiting for refunds whilst we have been closed and staff on furlough, have been very patient.”

About the venue’s plans for reopening, Graeme said, “The stance of the Cheese & Grain board has been to take the long view and do everything we can to ensure that we stay open in the long-term. The only reason we haven’t rushed with reopening is because we wanted to make sure that we could be Covid-safe and that we were ready.

“And we feel the time is right now. It’s going to be massively different, but that’s the world we live in now – we have to give it a go!

“We are currently working on refurbing the cafe and the bar to have that reopened, hopefully by 26th October.

“And then moving into November and December, we are hoping to start to introduce socially-distanced gigs – obviously with a massively reduced capacity, which has to be seated, cabaret-style. We hope to make a big announcement later in the month about these gigs, by 23rd October.

“We will also be reviewing the possibility of indoor markets returning before Christmas, but much depends on what happens with Covid-19 regulations.”  

Explaining the plans for 2021, Graeme said, “The shows announced for 2021 are big shows where hopefully things will be back to normal and we can have 800 people in the building.”

Announcing the line-up for 2021, the venue said, “Booking tickets in advance for these shows massively supports the venue during this incredibly difficult for the live events sector, not just financially, it also helps us secure more great artists to perform at the venue.  

“As a not-for-profit social enterprise and proudly independent venue the Cheese & Grain normally receives no government funding.

“The venue has been able to survive the crisis thanks to customers hanging on to tickets for rescheduled shows and making generous donations. Join us in looking forward to great shows next year. Buying tickets is the best thing you can do to support the venue. We look forward to seeing you again soon!” 

List of announced 2021 events:

1. Kosheen (Live) – 29th May

2. Arrested Development – 6th March

3. Scott Mills (DJ Set)– 9th July

4. Levellers – 24th June (Very limited resale tickets)

5. Hang Massive – 8th April

6. Goldie Lookin’ Chain – 1st May

7. Ferocious Dog – 18th November

8. The Sweet – 27th November

9. Black Uhuru – 26th June

10. From The Specials (Neville Staple) – 18th September

11. Electric Swing Circus – 23rd April

12. Dave Pearce (DJ Set)– 3rd April

13. Craig Charles (DJ Set) – 19th November

14. Andy Fairweather Low – 4th July

15. Bad Manners – 10th April

16. Think Floyd – 10th October

17. T-Rextasy – 12th September

18. The Feeling – 24th April

19. Paul Jones & Dave Kelly – 6th February

20. Martin Kemp & Musical Youth – 17th April

21. Wishbone Ash – 14th November

Tickets are on sale at  

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