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London’s Clapham Grand venue has reopened, with a line-up of shows scheduled, after its operator increased its socially-distanced event capacity from 280 to 400 by opening its newly refurbished top tier balcony for the first time in 15 years.

The venue, which under normal circumstances has a capacity of 1,250, is one of more than 135 grassroots music venues to receive emergency funding as part of the Government’s £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund. In-house initiatives have raised £50,000 for the venue.

Forthcoming shows include comedians Russell Howard and Jimmy Carr, and music acts Louise Redknapp and Frank Turner. The latter will return to Clapham Grand on 18 September, having raised £25,000 for the ‘Save The Grand’ campaign by playing a live-streamed show at the venue in June. He also played a pilot show, with a 200-capacity live audience, at the venue on 28 July.

Turner said, “It’s great to be back to mark the re-opening of the upper circle, with a show that is another milestone in the return of live music to the city and the venues that I love”

Clapham Grand manager Ally Wolf added: “It is amazing to be open again; to not only be able to bring our wonderful team back to work, artists and performers back onto our stage but more importantly audiences back to being entertained, safely of course.

“[The venue was] purpose built for entertainment, for providing much needed escapism from everyday life, which is needed now more than ever.”