‘We’d hate for it to fold’ – duo’s appeal to keep Hitchin comedy club afloat

PUBLISHED: 10:56 03 April 2020 | UPDATED: 13:21 03 April 2020

Comedy duo Doggett & Ephgrave. They have launched an appeal to keep their Hitchin Mostly Comedy club afloat during the current coronavirus crisis.

Comedy duo Doggett & Ephgrave. They have launched an appeal to keep their Hitchin Mostly Comedy club afloat during the current coronavirus crisis.

Doggett & Ephgrave.

Organisers of a popular Hitchin comedy night are appealing for supporters to help keep the club afloat during the current coronavirus crisis.

The uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is no laughing matter for Hitchin’s Mostly Comedy club.

Glyn Doggett and David Ephgrave are struggling to keep it afloat with no gigs currently bringing in any income.

The club, which has attracted the likes of Phill Jupitus, Harry Hill, Katherine Ryan and Jack Dee to Hitchin, could fold without help.

Doggett & Ephgrave have launched a JustGiving page to raise at least £1,500 to protect the club’s future during the COVID-19 crisis.

Doggett & Ephgrave at Hitchin Mostly Comedy. Picture: Gemma Poole.Doggett & Ephgrave at Hitchin Mostly Comedy. Picture: Gemma Poole.

“We hate asking for money, but anything you can give will be greatly appreciated,” they said.

More than £600 has already been raised by Mostly Comedy’s “amazing” fanbase.

In a newsletter to supporters, they wrote: “Like so many industries, the COVID-19 pandemic has thrown live events into crisis.

“Suddenly, the future of venues and gigs looks worryingly unsustainable.

Glyn Doggett (left) and David Ephgrave (right) with Reginald D Hunter, one of the many top comedians they have brought to Hitchin. Picture: Supplied by Doggett & EphgraveGlyn Doggett (left) and David Ephgrave (right) with Reginald D Hunter, one of the many top comedians they have brought to Hitchin. Picture: Supplied by Doggett & Ephgrave

“Sadly, that’s the case for Hitchin Mostly Comedy too.”

David added: “Glyn and I run the club as a pair of self-employed performers on a low income.

“As it stands, Mostly makes just enough money to sustain each consecutive event and the running costs as they come, but its survival relies on (1) the gigs going ahead, and (2) our taking little or no money from it.

“And when the money isn’t there, we plug the gap.”

The comedy duo have already had to postpone April 23’s gig featuring Phil Cornwell and Brodi Snook to September 18.

The Mostly Comedy organisers added: “Until our shows can definitely continue, the club has no income – our ticket provider holds all funds until a week after each show.

“Meanwhile, our running costs (except for act fees) including public liability insurance, venue hire, office/storage rent and utility bills, web renewal and this mailing list service, keep going out.”

Comedy club fans can donate now at https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/mostlycomedy

The Comet is #ThereWithYou during the coronavirus crisis.The Comet is #ThereWithYou during the coronavirus crisis.

On the crowdfunding page, David, on behalf of Doggett & Ephgrave, writes: “Due to a quiet start to 2020 – and to cover costs for our new live podcast – I’ve already lent the club £2,132 of my own money since January and contribute to cashflow too.

“Until it’s safe for our shows to go ahead, this figure will keep mounting up, and it’s not sustainable.

“Mostly Comedy’s had a wonderful history and gone from strength to strength, but it’s a labour of love more than a money-making venture. We’d hate for it to fold because of this.

“Anything you can give will go toward plugging the gap left by the missing income for a few months and buy us some time.

“If you’ve been to one (or many) of nearly 200 shows since 2008 and enjoyed it, you’d be helping us out.

“And before long, we’ll be back provoking laughter again; the way things are now, I think we’ll need it!”

Visit www.mostlycomedy.co.uk for more on Mostly Comedy.


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