The number of illegal raves taking place in London has reportedly doubled in a year, with the accelerated closure of nightclubs believed to be one of the key causes.
A freedom of information request by the Sunday Telegraph revealed that 133 plans for illegal raves were uncovered in 2017, a rise of 70 from the previous year.
One possible explanation for the huge rise is the decline in London nightlife, with more than fifty percent of nightclubs in the capital shutting their doors between 2005 and 2015 – including notable venues such as Cable and Plastic People.
It is also believed that the spiralling cost of drinks is putting revellers from heading out to official nights, instead favouring cheaper unofficial events.
DJ Bill Brewster told The Guardian: “A lot of young people are looking for something a little bit transgressive. I think it’s innate in teenagers and people in their early twenties to want to do stuff their not supposed to do. And even though raves are illegal, most of them don’t do much harm apart from giving a few people a poor night’s sleep.”
DCI John Oldham, the head of crime at the Metropolitan Police’s public order command, said: “Using covert tactics, we try and understand who the organiser is and where they live. We’ve woken up to the problem and put out a much higher intelligence requirement to identify these things.”
Earlier this year, the government also backed plans to secure music venues from developers.
The ‘Agent of Change’ principle sees the government committing to the introduction of a law that will see developers forced to take account of the impact that any new project could have on pre-existing businesses.
The law was initially tabled in the House of Commons by former Labour MP John Spellar, and has received the backing of Housing Secretary Sajid Javid.