Upstairs At The Department Store (restaurant)

Discussion in 'Brixton' started by ringo, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. cuppa tee

    cuppa tee Well-Known Member

    Blimey that's steep......Looks like I was wrong.... :facepalm:
     
  2. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    POW / Cairo v S&P comparisons are missing the point imo. There's plenty to criticise about eg the POW and I have good reasons not to go there, albeit different ones to opposing S&P.
    This thread, however, is about S&P and its impact on the residents of a deprived area.
     
    Gramsci and editor like this.
  3. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Looks like they've found a way to cream off some of the rich incomers. Until Squire offers a free bar that's open till late and some great free music nights, they're always going to come over as exclusive and elitist compared to the Prince.
     
  4. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Ah yes that's a good point thanks - the Blue Room at PoW is intended for 6 people at £240 - so not really for 40+ people.

    As for the entertainment, I was there on Sunday afternoon and they had a very talented singer/songwriter called Benedict Cork playing - free of charge.
     
  5. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    and the argument that other (eg shoes) outlets are selling goods beyond the reach of poorer people doesn't hold water either, imo. There are plenty of cheaper businesses taking part in exploiting an already deprived area, eg Sports Direct.
     
  6. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    No, they don't... "Secretly vetted by an unnamed committee"...? Is that what Upstairs are doing?
     
  7. cuppa tee

    cuppa tee Well-Known Member

    Yes apologies for that, it's comparable to upstairs but in my defence not somewhere that I'd go.......
     
  8. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Totally understand - but whether or not it's somewhere that the people of this message board would go has never been the point of the discussion... Or has it?

    And Seb -

    "POW / Cairo v S&P comparisons are missing the point imo. There's plenty to criticise about eg the POW and I have good reasons not to go there, albeit different ones to opposing S&P.
    This thread, however, is about S&P and its impact on the residents of a deprived area."

    Understood - that's probably my fault for changing the discussion. I came on here to comment at the time that regular posters were talking about "£240 just to fucking set foot...", and my two pence was that £240 wasn't that much in the grand scheme of things. It didn't seem trivial to offer local comparisons that charge entry, but I accept that in the wider discussion of S&P and its impact on the residents of a deprived area, it carries much less weight.
     
  9. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Yes. Read the post containing their terms earlier in this thread.
     
  10. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Shame that it's a private, exclusive gig that no one else can see.
     
  11. 3Zeros

    3Zeros Well-Known Member

    whatwilldid, I don't know if you've been as a member or as a guest, but if as a member you will know you had to apply for the free membership by telling them about yourself. That process is now more clearly defined in the application form on the website (job title, job description, why you would be a "good fit")


    Whether it's by design or not, this will introduce biases. Certainly, I could never describe the clientele that I've seen there as diverse...
     
  12. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    For the benefit of those that can't see the message in a quote:

    Please provide information which demonstrates your ability to make a positive contribution to the Upstairs community. We are looking for a broad and varied membership database and wish to fill our space with people who will respect other members, our venue and our staff.

    To be clear - from that message, you read "each application will be secretly vetted by an unnamed committee before granting membership"? It sounds to me as though you're deliberately reading negativity between the lines of a fairly positive message to support your argument. But the text speaks for itself.

    Isn't it good that they want broad and varied membership? Shouldn't they want to fill the space with people who will respect other members and the venue?
     
    Maggot likes this.
  13. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Will I know that? I'm afraid that's simply untrue - I did not have to tell them about myself. I got a membership off them thanks to good ol' fashioned who you know. A friend of mine works there. Also it seems that I can pay for a membership without having to tell them anything else about me. So, it seems that only new members have to give a job title, description, and demonstrate their ability to make a positive contribution to the community. Is the suggestion that certain professions will be rejected on the basis of not reaching some kind of level of worthiness? Why don't we try it out?
     
  14. 3Zeros

    3Zeros Well-Known Member

    Nope. Existing members had to do the same and be vetted.

    Yes, let's try that experiment. I assume you can find all the participants and fund their memberships?
     
  15. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    At which point in the application process? I can click straight through to paying a monthly direct debit without any questions asked, and I have never been asked about my employment status by Upstairs.

    Why don't we have an Urban 75 membership? We could see if Mr/Mrs standard Brixton demographic would be accepted into Upstairs based on their secretive vetting procedure. If the application is turned down (and not on the basis of being fully subscribed) then it seems that there might be a point that they are proactively trying to prevent the average person from Brixton being a member. If the application is successful, then it would appear that they genuinely want a mixed membership (albeit at the cost of £23 per month which is too expensive for many).

    Or better still, we could ask them. That might be less effort - I'll do that and get back to you.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2018
  16. 3Zeros

    3Zeros Well-Known Member

    I think we're referring to different things.

    Unless someone got a free membership through "someone in the know" they had to email through "a bit about themselves" and be vetted.

    Anyone who has that existing membership can now select just to pay and isn't subject to further vetting.

    Any new member applicants have to fill out the application form you can now view on their website.
     
    Gramsci and editor like this.
  17. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    London-wide places and venues where an alternative lifestyle is promoted by providing free access and allowing room for creativity and creative and radical thinking to grow are rapidly disappearing. What was a breeding ground (eg Brixton) for exploring alternatives to an ever more commercially-orientated (night life) economy has given way for exploitative business models. I'm refusing to take this as a given, as there are still enough angry people seeking alternatives for the better of a community.
    Membership clubs, expensive gastro pubs and yuppie hang outs and greedy estate agents/landlords are not only contributing to normalising a consumer-based lifestyle, but are actively driving a wedge between the haves and the have-nots. It divides communities and discourages radical thinking. This has a massive impact on wider political issues.
    Yuppies out.
     
    Gramsci, sealion, peterkro and 2 others like this.
  18. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    ...and I'm not only talking about squatters and punks. Working and poor people who just want to have cheap moan are also deprived of places to meet and exchange ideas.
     
    Gramsci and editor like this.
  19. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    You end an impassioned and attractive post with "yuppies out". So this radical and free thinking community that you wish to see around you caters to you, and people like you, but not me and people like me (assuming the target of "yuppies out" is people who go to a private members bar in Brixton, like me). Sounds pretty divisive to me.
     
  20. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    never had you in mind, but if you define yourself as a Yuppie be my guest.
     
  21. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    way to mis-interpret my post....
     
    Gramsci likes this.
  22. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Response from Member Liason at upstairs -

    The member liaison team which includes myself, and a few others when I am unavailable, will be reading through the applications. We require job title and description and, as you say, some information outlining why they would make a positive contribution to the Upstairs community.

    By this we mean bringing their energy and love for life Upstairs. Questions regarding an applicants job are so we can get to know our future members and generate their member profile. We do not make any judgement based on job, salary, social status, beliefs or any other defining factor. We make judgements based on the effort made in completing the application, a persons enthusiasm and the ability to demonstrate that they will respect the other members, the space and our staff. It would be a terribly dull place if everyone Upstairs was the same, I hope you agree.

    Yeah so maybe they're lying and there is a shadowy committee not letting certain people in, or maybe they're running a private members bar on the roof of their HQ and want to get the mix of members right, and are valuing effort and desire to actually be a member above other factors. That'll be for individuals to speculate for themselves in the absence of any proof - but at least we have more information from the horse's mouth, as it were.
     
  23. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Sorry for misinterpreting your post, that isn't my intention - I'm clearly not very good at this but I never said I was.

    But as far as I can see it, you want to see a better community for people who are like you. I don't blame you for that. But by ending the post with "yuppies out" you are saying that you want that at the expense of a group of people who are defined by their income/social status. It seems to me to undermine the virtue of your position.
     
  24. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    people like me :confused:
     
    Gramsci likes this.
  25. 3Zeros

    3Zeros Well-Known Member

    "It would be a terribly dull place if everyone Upstairs was the same, I hope you agree"

    If this means they've been going for diversity with their current members; they've failed.
     
    Gramsci likes this.
  26. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Yeah, again, sorry if I've messed up here, but I assumed you were aligning yourself to people who were angry and seeking alternatives for the better of a community. And then you ended it with Yuppies out. Yuppies being a word that defines a group of people based on their income/social standing. I mean no offence.
     
  27. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    if by 'people like me' you mean people who are about to lose their homes and holding on to their livelihoods by their teeth, then yes, I'd like to see a community that accepts and even prioritises 'people like me' and makes a deprived area as un-desirable as possible for people who are likely to profit from peoples' poverty in the near future.
    I never said anything about a free radical community, I was talking about spaces that allow for alternative points of view to prosper and for people to organise to defend their livelihoods.
     
    sealion likes this.
  28. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    also, being a Yuppie surely isn't based on income / social status, but a life style choice. one that has rarely if never contributed to the good of the wider community.
     
  29. whatwilldid

    whatwilldid Member

    Right. Yeah. So when I said that you want " to see a better community for people who are like you", that was accurate? As I said, I don't blame you for that. My only point was that I think the virtue of your argument is lost a little bit by calling for certain people who are differentiated by their wealth/social class to be somehow sacrificed. Yuppies out is divisive. Not inclusive. What if someone born and bred in Brixton from a challenging background gets a job in the city and buys a house in the town they group up in. Are they a Yuppie?
     
  30. littleseb

    littleseb littleseb

    see post above.
     

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