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The Rainbow

The owner of Digbeth’s Rainbow pub has appealed to Birmingham Council to “cut us some slack” after last night’s public meeting which attracted more than 300 people to the venue.

As regular readers will know, this fine old boozer which has developed into one of the region’s most distinguished left-field music destinations has been threatened with a noise abatement order – apparently after complaints by one individual living in the nearby Abacus apartments.

Rainbow and Abacus Apartments

This follows a similar saga affecting the Spotted Dog in Alcester Street.

Rainbow publican Kent Davis is seeking permission for a roof to cover the outside courtyard area where he stages DJ nights in an attempt to muffle the noise – but can only recoup the £30,000 cost if a street festival on August 1 is successful. And that might require officers turning a blind eye or two to the odd decibel infringement.

“What we’re asking is for the Council to cut us some slack” Davis said.

“We’re doing everything we can to try and be accommodating, but there’s no way we can afford £30,000 unless we make the money back from the festival.

“We’ve even said that if local residents are going to be disturbed, maybe we could put them up for a night at a hotel at our expense, but we’re being told we can’t do that.

“The Council seem to be looking two ways at this. You’ve got guys like Ernie Hendricks [Kings Heath and Moseley councillor] whose talking positively about developing a music policy for the city – but then there are other departments acting like the cultural Taliban.

“We've been talking to people from the Environmental Protection Unit and they do accept that context is important. Well, there’s nowhere that context needs to be take into account more than Digbeth, which is a lively entertainment area.

“What’s frustrating is that there’s one person in the Abacus apartments complaining, but there are others who share the same façade of the building who are fully supportive of us and appreciate what we do.”



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