London’s biggest gay club Heaven evacuated after gas leak at 3am
London’s largest gay nightclub Heaven was evacuated in the early hours of Tuesday morning after a gas leak in the centre of the city.
Over 1000 revellers were evacuated from the venue at 3am after a leak was discovered in a nearby street.
Several hundred people were also evacuated from a local hotel.
One witness described the “fear” immediately after the evacuation as club-goers and hotel customers alike were unaware of what had happened.
“In the first few minutes whilst the cordon was being established people where definitely in fear as they weren’t sure what was going on or whether an explosion had taken place,” a witness told the Evening Standard.
Initial reports were conflicted with regards to the pace of the evacuation, with some attendees reporting “chaos” in the area.
One club attendee said: “Literally chaos. Crush on the stairs. Security being knocked aside.”
Another person tweeted that they were unsure of what was happening after the evacuation.
However, the owner of Heaven disagreed with reports that the evacuation was a panicked one.
Jeremy Joseph told Gay Star News: “You practice evacuations but you can’t really do it properly until you have a full capacity venue.
“It wasn’t a rushed evacuation though. It wasn’t like it was an attack or a fire where we had to evacuate quickly. The evacuation was calm and slow. People were allowed to get their coats.”
Joseph continued: “I just want to say a massive thank you to the Fire Brigade and Met Police. They were amazing. It’s not easy when you’re evacuating.
“People get nervous because of things that have previously happened in London. I don’t think people credit the emergency services enough.
“And a special thank you has to go to those who left calmly and made the evacuation as easy as possible.”
Joseph later thanked club attendees for their “calm co-operation” with the evacuation on Twitter.
A spokesperson from the London Fire Brigade said this morning that the clubgoers were evacuated as a precautionary measure.
The spokesperson said: “We are assisting police on the Strand after a ruptured gas main was discovered using detection equipment and high levels of natural gas were detected in the atmosphere.
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“We do not know the cause of the gas leak at this stage. It is ongoing and engineers are down at the scene trying to isolate the leak. There are still high readings of natural gas in the area.”
This is the second gas leak in Central London this year, following a leak in the Westminster area on January 9.
Watch one eyewitness’ video of the aftermath of the leak
my video of the response to the gas leak on the strand bc I am a srs journalism guyz pic.twitter.com/HmD7qBprDc
— joshwa (@joshaaronr) January 23, 2018