Legendary club is on market

Pemps club on Dorning Street, Wigan, up for sale
Pemps club on Dorning Street, Wigan, up for sale
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ONE of Wigan’s most iconic nightspots is on the market.

Many Wiganers will remember the legendary nightclub Pemps for its notoriously scruffy interior and its controversial owner Barbara Calderbank who chose which partygoers made the grade each week.

The Dorning Street venue closed its doors around fours years ago with a sign placed on the door saying it had shut for complete refurbishment.

It was thought the notoriously camera shy owner was taking a break, but she never returned and the doors remained closed.

Now the former nightclub premises and yard is up for a sale, for around £100,000.

The property comprises two buildings and a yard area while the site extends to approximately 0.13 acres.

The single storey rendered building has a gross external floor area of approximately 200sq m and the two storey building an estimated gross external floor area of 213sq m.

Wigan born broadcaster and author Stuart Maconie, a one time Pemps regular, said: “I used to go to Pemps a lot in the mid 1980s and it was an amazing place.

“It was awful to look at like a windowless abattoir but the atmosphere and music were extraordinary.

“My friend from Newcastle once came up and said it was the best nightclub he had ever been to.

“It had a pretty relaxed attitude to pretty much anything.

“And as for health and safety: there used to be a heater which was a giant metal pipe with flames coming out of one end.”

Pemps was a popular destination for Wigan’s drinkers and in 1998 was voted by Loaded magazine readers as being in the country’s top 10.

Part of the appeal would have been to see whether you were good enough to gain entry.

The boss herself would patrol the long queues in leather jacket and boots, singling out favoured customers for entry with her ever present whip!

It was often said “If she doesn’t know your face, you’re not in!”

It is hoped that the drab premises will be bought and brought back to life, still as a nightclub.

Pemps regulars fondly remember the carpet-covered bar stools, the foul smell in the air, the plastic garden furniture used inside, warm cans of lager and grabbing a lollipop and a chocolate mouse on the way in.

For inquiries, call Healy Simpson.