Panic at the disco? Nightclubs are struggling to compete with bars and pubs

Francesca Washtell
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Ibiza Club Life -2007
Get the strobe lighting and disco ball action in while you can (Source: Getty)

The party could be winding down in the UK's nightclub scene, as revenues in the top 100 nightclubs have fallen nine per cent in the last year.

A lack of access to funding and increased competition has left clubs struggling to compete with late-night bars and pubs, according to commercial lender Ortus Secured Finance.

Turnover at nightclubs has been falling continuously over the last three years. Last year, the top 100 nightclubs posted revenues of £340m, down from £373m the year before.

Read more: The war on London's nightlife is damaging business - and ruining our fun

The boom in late-opening bars and clubs as a result of the 2003 Licensing Act has had a big knock-on effect on the country's biggest discotheques.

"The economic downturn together with the introduction of new licensing laws hit the nightclub industry hard," Jon Salisbury, managing director of Ortus Secured Finance said.

"Nightclubs have struggled to secure the funding they need in order to compete with this new wave of venues. While there has been a transitional period over the last few years many nightclubs continue to need funding in order to renovate, buy new equipment or even diversify to include restaurants and bars, for example."

Read more: Britain's economy needs more clubbers

The Night Tube, which finally arrives on 19 August, could aid the nightclub sector, though it is too early to predict its precise impact.

In a 2014 report, Transport for London said the Night Tube "will open London's night-time economy to a whole host of new opportunities, altering the way that businesses choose to operate".