Themed Prohibition Cabaret Bar opens its doors.
A GATESHEAD entrepreneur launches his dream entertainment venture this week after investing start-up funds into creating the 1920s-themed Prohibition Cabaret Bar.
Mitch Mitchell has invested time and PS10,000 in financial support in the form of a Transmit Start-Up loan into transforming the railway arch unit in Brandling Street into the 1920s and '30s-style venue, with a focus on cabaret, vaudeville and music-hall entertainment.
The venture, brought to fruition through assistance from Gateshead Council and Network Rail, will finally open its doors to the public today with a Halloween-themed event.
Mr Mitchell, who has worked on the North East live entertainment circuit for almost 20 years, said he will initially create a handful of jobs, with the potential to provide more roles over Christmas and other busy periods, while also providing a platform for the huge number of North East's live performers he has come to know over the years.
The former Black Swan assistant venue manager hopes to have captured the atmosphere and look of the era, which is seeing a surge in popularity thanks to TV shows including Peaky Blinders and Boardwalk Empire.
He said: "I grew up in Gateshead and have seen some huge changes over the last decade.
"Gateshead Council have been fantastic to work with and extremely supportive.
"The landlords of the premises, Network Rail, are the UK's largest landlord to small businesses and provide premises to hundreds of other grassroots and independent businesses up and down the land.
"Between Network Rail and Gateshead Council I feel my business will be nurtured and encouraged at every step.
"The prohibition theme comes from my interest in the era, a lifelong love of all things 1920s and 30s.
"The style, fashions, cars, music, films, books, architecture, furniture, design and aesthetics of the 1920s and 1930s have influenced so much in modern day society, and in my opinion can't be matched.
"I want Prohibition Cabaret Bar to be an intimate and bespoke space set aside for decadence, taking customers straight to the underworld and high-life of the 1920s when prohibition ruled and the excitement and thrill of being caught with a bottle in one hand and a royal flush in the other was just a secret knock or VIP invite away!
"And I'd like to think this could be rolled out to other areas.
"My ultimate dream is to retire in British Columbia, Canada. I'd like to get a smattering of Prohibition Cabaret Bars across the UK in similar towns and build up my portfolio to set up residency there in Vancouver's famous Gastown."
The new <B Prohibition Bar in Gateshead