Bar industry unites to support Clutha Vaults victims

Clutha VaultsMore than £16,000 was raised by people from the hospitality industry in Scotland at an event to help the victims of Glasgow’s Clutha Vaults tragedy.

The event at the Barras Art and Design Centre in Glasgow on January 19, which attracted over 500 people, was organised by a team of bar industry professionals led by Scott Gemmell of consultancy LA Group.

The team also included his cousin Andy Gemmell who is Dewars whisky global brand ambassador, Mike Aikman of Edinburgh’s Bramble and Lucky Liquor Co bars, Stuart McCluskey of Edinburgh’s The Bon Vivant and Devil’s Advocate bars, and Lauren Stewart from Saltmarket Design.

Between them, they secured over 100 prizes from signed bottles and distillery trips to iPads and weekends away in five-star hotels.

A total of £16,072.20 was raised over the course of the evening through a live auction, raffle, ticket and bar sales, with all proceeds going to the official Glasgow City Council Clutha Appeal Fund.

The fund was established to support anyone facing hardship as a result of the accident on November 29 when a Police Scotland helicopter crashed at the Clutha Vaults, killing the three crew and seven people in the pub.

At £2,600, the single highest-bid auction lot was for a night-out with the organisers followed by an overnight trip to Aberfeldy Distillery.

Staff from the White Lyan bar in Shoreditch, east London, helped tend the bar and serve cocktails on the night. People were also brought over by a 70-seater coach from Edinburgh.

Scott Gemmell said: “It was just heart-warming for us all to play any part here in bringing people together to celebrate this great pub in Glasgow.

“It wasn’t just a pub in the city, it stood for something bigger and embodied all the great things we love about Glasgow.

“We were really all just administrators of the whole event – people were just so willing to give their time, effort and money to help pull this together and raise funds for the appeal. The way the industry has stepped up has just been incredible.”

The organisers extended their particular thanks to the many companies and individuals who made the event such a success, including Diageo, Bacardi, Tennents Caledonian, First Drinks, Rémy Cointreau, Morrison Bowmore, Maxxium, West Brewery, Williams Bros, Hallgarten Druit, Filshill, Speciality Brands and Adidas.

Andy Gemmell added: “Companies were so generous with their donations and we couldn’t have achieved what we did without their help. So, a huge thank you to them and to the bands – The Shiverin’ Sheiks, The Basement Boogie-Men, David Duffy, Papa Shandy & the Drams, Danny ‘Greenman’ O’Brien and David Stone, who all gave their time for free and rocked the night away in the spirit of the Clutha Vaults.”

Click here for details about the Clutha Appeal Fund.

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