Kelham Island to be transformed into Arctic Monkeys fan village

To mark Arctic Monkeys’ four sell out homecoming gigs this week, local businesses in Kelham Island have got together to create an informal fan village. 

A pop-up photography exhibition of the band kicks off at Kelham Island Arts Collective on Ball Street today and will run until Sunday, 23 September. The exhibition will showcase previously unseen photographs of the band captured by photographer Zackery Michael during the making of Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino. The band themselves have a connection with Kelham Island, with early single When The Sun Goes Down thought to have been inspired by the band’s experiences practising in the area’s studios.

The idea for the Monkeys’ fan village comes from the band’s manager for more than ten years, Geoff Barradale, and Alexis Krachai, who chairs a group at the Chamber of Commerce which explores ways to attract more visitors to Sheffield.

Alex said: “Over 50,000 people are going to enjoy the Arctic Monkeys this week. Going to an amazing gig is one thing, but Sheffield can also show local and visiting fans that a night out around Kelham is equally as memorable. We wanted to create something that highlights exactly what Sheffield is all about.”

The Sheffield Brewery Company on Burton Road will be hosting a Tranquility Basement night at Albyn Works on Friday, 21 and Saturday, 22 September. Co-founder Pete Rawlinson said: “Everyone at the company loves music and the Albyn Works has been home to loads of Sheffield bands. Ollie from Bring Me the Horizon started here, so did Vitamin Z, and more recently, Cellar Door Moon Crow. When we heard about the plans for a fan village down at Kelham, we jumped at the chance to put on a special couple of nights and we can’t wait to throw open the doors and host a Tranquility Basement Night.”

Duncan Shaw, manager of The Fat Cat, has something special up his sleeve. “We have created a limited edition 4.2% blonde craft ale called ‘Tranquility’ to celebrate the Arctic Monkeys return to Sheffield, which will run alongside the photography exhibition and offer gig goers something new to sample during the week. Available from Monday in the Kelham Island and Neepsend areas, £20 from every keg sold will also go towards the Cathedral Archer Project homeless charity.”

Tracy Viner from the Cathedral Archer Project thanked the Fat Cat for its generosity. She said: “We work with homeless people from sleeping bag to employment, supporting them to overcome their issues and have fulfilling and enjoyable lives. We can only do this with the generous support and kindness of local businesses that help to raise our profile to new audiences as well as much needed income.”

Local taxi firm, City Taxis, is offering fixed taxi fares for pre-booked cabs from the exhibition to the arena for £7.30. Paul Gosney from City Taxis said: “Everyone at City Taxis is absolutely buzzing for the homecoming of the Arctic Monkeys. Sheffield is really developing and Kelham in particular is becoming a fantastic new hub with great restaurants, bars and pop-up events attracting visitors every night of the week.”

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