On the wikipedia entry for Hackney it states that "Hackney Town Hall Square has been developed as a new 'creative quarter'." Oh dear! Ocean is bankrupt, though at least will re-emerge as a cinema soon. Hackney Empire is currently more dark than going (but it's a beautiful place, nevertheless), etc.
It's clearly attempted to move West a bit. Dalston has that creative buzz. The beacons are The Rio Cinema, The Vortex, Arcola and Cafe Oto. Meanwhile bubbling under are some venues such as the Boys Club on Boleyn Road, the Lux Cinema people and innumerable artists. This heartens me despite the arrival of the hen party brigade from Essex on Saturday nights. Thankfully, though not Downstairs.
Meanwhile we have our own square - Gillett - and even a small bit of open space for performances at Dalston Square to come.
But now, when the time is right, where's the money to give us the extra leg up? Nowhere. We have to live in hope however.
It's all happened despite the powers that be at the ACE or the Town Hall, who threw too much at Ocean, Clissold Leisure Centre and placed their bets on Dalston Square rather than Gillett.
I'm glad however that there is now a healthy dialogue with LBH as we search for the resources to consolidate on our successes, and I hope that it appears soon enough.