Don Broco to play homecoming Esquires gig to help venue through Coronavirus uncertainty

Bedford Esquires has been crowdfunding to help keep it afloat during the Coronavirus enforced closure.Bedford Esquires has been crowdfunding to help keep it afloat during the Coronavirus enforced closure.
Bedford Esquires has been crowdfunding to help keep it afloat during the Coronavirus enforced closure. | freelance
Bedford Esquires has revealed Don Broco will headline the venue this winter and you can buy tickets early if you’ve donated to the venue’s Crowdfunder campaign.

Don Broco will play a special hometown gig at Esquires in Bedford this winter as part of the venue’s ongoing campaign to raise vital funds while closed during the Coronavirus outbreak.

The alt-rockers, who were due to headline the Slam Dunk festival at sites across the UK last weekend, will be returning to the venue they cut their teeth playing at in November.

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Tickets for the gig are expected to sell out in record time and go on sale this Friday at 10am.

Don Broco will headline Bedford Esquires in November.Don Broco will headline Bedford Esquires in November.
Don Broco will headline Bedford Esquires in November. | other

However, anyone who has already pledged towards Esquires’ Crowdfunder campaign – or who makes a donation in the coming days – will receive an email with a special link to buy tickets ahead of the general sale.

Esquires owner Gareth Barber said: “Having Don Broco come back to play a show for us will be amazing - this is a band who have played at Ally Pally to thousands of people.

“It's so good a band of their stature is coming back to their roots and supporting the venue.

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“They're playing for free so every penny raised from the ticket sales is going to help towards us staying afloat.

“Don Broco have gone the extra mile for us and have been really receptive since we put the idea to them. They’ve gone above and beyond.

“There’s also going to be a limited-edition t-shirt they're designing.

"The band kind of formed at our open mic nights. They always used to come down and play at them, they’ve always kind of been around here.

"We're very happy and very honoured they’re coming back.”

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Don Broco formed in 2008 and consist of singer Rob Damiani, guitarist Simon Delaney, bassist and programmer Tom Doyle and drummer Matt Donnelly.

Their third album, Technology was released in 2018 and followed their 2012 debut Priorities and 2015’s Automatic.

They have clocked up tens of millions of views online for past singles including You Wanna Know, Come Out To LA and Superlove, they were due to headline the main stage at the Slam Dunk festival in Leeds and Hatfield last week before it was rescheduled to later this year then postponed until next year.

Despite formally ending earlier this month, Esquires has added an extra week to its fund-raising appeal so people can make further donations as well as receive the advance link to purchase a Don Broco ticket.

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At the time of writing, the venue has raised £46,754 through 1,122 pledges, smashing its original target of £20,000.

Supporters also have the chance to enter a special raffle for rare Pete McKee signed Oasis print.

Mr Barber added: “Pete's step-son used to DJ at The Pad in Bedford.

“Pete's done a lot with Noel Gallagher in the past and for groups like the Teenage Cancer Trust.

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“He wanted to support the venue with some rare artwork, again, it's just very humbling.”

As well as using the money raised through the Crowdfunder appeal to help the venue cope with the ongoing impact of temporary closure, there are also plans to use some to improve disabled access to its main stage on the first floor and install a disabled toilet to make the venue more inclusive.

Talking about the fund-raising appealing, Mr Barber added: “I've run out of words to describe how well it's gone and how it’s made us feel.

“It's a very worrying time but the pressure it has taken off, knowing the venue is potentially safe, has allowed us to get some clarity back again.

“It's been overwhelming and very humbling.”

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In recent years, Esquires has seen the likes of Idles, The Murder Capital, Kate Tempest, Royal Blood and Tom Grennan headline the venue. It was due to celebrate its 30th birthday with a programme of gigs this summer.

Don Broco will play on Monday, November 23.

Tickets will cost £20 and go on sale at 10am this Friday, with Crowdfunder donors able to buy tickets 10 minutes before they go on general sale.

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