Fagin’s nightclub opened in 1970 on Oxford Street in Manchester. Many famous faces performed there in the 70s and 80s, including Cliff Richard and Lulu.
Beneath Fagin’s, lay its sister club Rafters. Known since the early 90s as The Music Box, this eclectic venue saw live performances from many bands, including Motorhead, Joy Division and Depeche Mode.
In 1983, Fagin’s renamed to Jilly’s and later became known as Jilly’s Rockworld. Jilly’s was primarily an alternative venue and drew in large crowds for its regular rock nights. The club was popular in the 90s and 00s for its infamous Friday night ‘all nighters’ and was one of the only clubs that was open until 7am.
Jilly’s was a stark contrast to the glitz and glam of other city centre venues. The club’s ‘wear what you like’ attitude and mix of punk, metal and classic rock garnered a loyal following, with its popularity continuing into the 00s.
The club spanned 4 separate rooms and bolstered a community feel and friendly atmosphere. The playlist consisted of classic bands such as Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and Metallica (pictured above performing at the Metro Radio Arena in 2009), as well as the obligatory Nine Inch Nails, Rage Against The Machine and System of a Down.
Both Jilly’s and The Music Box came to a close in 2010 amid dwindling numbers and rising competition from other venues.
A food store now stands in place of Jilly’s, with very little remaining of the iconic venue.
Jilly’s was an integral part of the Manchester alternative scene and will always be fondly remembered.
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