It had been a while since I walked down Stoke Newington Church Street but I was shocked to see that the old Vortex building has gone. Having been away for a year and a half I kind of half expected that the Vortex would have been saved at the last minute (like in the movies) by a kindly anarchist-philanthropist, and was once again happily jumping to the sounds of atonal improvised sax playing.
But the Vortex had gone, to be replaced by a load of scaffolding. No more will I come staggering home at half past two in the morning, dying for a waz, and be suddenly seduced inside by the strange wails of freeform jazz. No more will I be able to ruin a perfectly good evening by suggesting "hey let’s go and see Penny Rimbaud out of Crass live in Stoke Newington." In its glory days there was also a rest home downstairs for all those lost texts about structural film theory and feminist cultural critiques.
Has the Vortex by any chance been put in the British Museum?