Over a thousand clubbers at a gay venue had to be evacuated in the early hours of Saturday morning following an arson attack at a club in Newcastle.

The entrance to the The Loft Luxe club in Newcastle, northern England was doused in petrol and set alight at approximately 3.50 am on Saturday morning.

The club is considered one of the most popular in the city’s gay village (or pink triangle as it referred to locally).

“Petrol was poured around the entrance way,” said Paul Knox of Pure Leisure who own the club.”We still had quite a lot of customers inside and we had to evacuate the building and everyone was taken out through a fire exit.”

A Tyne and Wear fireservice spokesman said: “At 4am crews attended the incident at The Loft Luxe club. The venue had already been evacuated by the arrival of the fire service.”

Two men who have yet to be named will appear at Newcastle Magistrates Court later today charged with arson with intent to endanger lives.