Nightclub needs a bright future

ZEST nightclub, in its various guises, has been a feature of the Ipswich entertainment scene since the late 1980s - but over recent years it has been causing increasing concern for the police.

ZEST nightclub, in its various guises, has been a feature of the Ipswich entertainment scene since the late 1980s - but over recent years it has been causing increasing concern for the police.

That concern finally led to the closure of the club at the end of last year following the murder of Jimoh Plunkett.

Now the proprietor of the club, Kerpal Bains, has accepted that he will not be able to reopen and has decided to walk away from his business in the town.

While many people will be sorry to hear that - over the years Hollywood, Kartouche, and Zest provided a great deal of entertainment for many people - it does give the building the prospect of a new lease of life.


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The owners of the building have been granted a licence - with conditions - to open a new entertainment venue there. It would certainly be good to see the historic former maltings building return to life again.

However it is understandable that the police will want to ensure that any activity there is properly regulated - and it could be that a new type of entertainment centre may emerge.

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Many people feel there is a need for more venues for live music, from indie to rock and even country and folk.

Whatever the future, the former Zest building has a great deal of potential for a new operator - so long as steps are taken to ensure all its customers and staff are safe and act within the law at all times.

RETAILING in Ipswich has received a double boost today with the news that £50 million is to be spent on redeveloping the Civic Centre site and profits at the Co-op have increased significantly.

The Civic Centre site is vital for the development of the town centre and to attract shoppers who might otherwise be tempted to Colchester or Norwich.

Many people will be hoping it attracts major retailers who are not already represented in the town centre.

And the Co-op's continued growth shows that a regional company which knows the market it is serving can continue to cope with national and multi-national retailers.

Its emphasis on providing local convenience shops which are open at times when customers want to use them has really paid off over the last two decades - giving the East of England Co-op a vital role in the life of the region.

SUFFOLK boxer Steve Spartacus will have the hopes of the region resting on his shoulders tonight as he takes on Tony Oakey for the British light-heavyweight title.

The 30-year-old from Ipswich may be the underdog in this fight - but his fans know that he won't let them down and could just produce the kind of performance that will propel him into the big league of professional fighters.

Boxing fans from across Suffolk will be cheering him on in tonight's televised bout.

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