The latest industry news to your inbox.


I'd like to hear about marketing opportunities


I accept IQ Magazine's Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy


Health and safety review for O2 Academy Brixton

The venue's premises licence has been suspended by Lambeth Council since the fatal crowd crush at the venue last December

By James Hanley on 11 Apr 2023

O2 Academy Brixton

image © Ewan Munro

Lambeth Council is to undertake a thorough health and safety review of O2 Academy Brixton following the deadly crowd crush at the venue last December.

The Academy Music Group venue had its premises licence suspended by the council following the show by Afrobeats singer/songwriter Asake, which was abandoned following reports that a large number of people were attempting to force entry. Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, and 23-year-old Gaby Hutchinson both suffered fatal injuries in the incident, while a third person was left in a critical condition.

The authority has appointed former council chief Paul Martin to independently lead its investigation, and is also reviewing licensable activities at the 4,921-cap venue. A separate criminal investigation is also being carried out by the Metropolitan police to examine the events of the night and surrounding issues.

“We are very mindful of the profound impact this incident has had on many people who were present at the O2 Academy on that night and on the family and loved ones of the two people who tragically lost their lives that evening, and the person that remains in a critical condition,” says Lambeth Council CEO Bayo Dosunmu.

“We are acutely aware of our fundamental health and safety responsibility, and that this consideration overrides all others”

“In order that Lambeth Council rigorously and independently investigates what happened on that evening, I have asked one of London’s most experienced former chief executives to lead on the health and safety investigation on behalf of the council, working closely with the Metropolitan police. My commitment is to ensure that this is investigated thoroughly.”

Following an initial 28-day temporary closure of the Academy in the wake of the 15 December 2022 tragedy, Lambeth Council suspended the venue’s licence for an additional three months until 16 April 2023, leading a number of shows to be moved to other London venues.

“I appreciate that the O2 Academy Brixton is an iconic and much loved venue, and the impact of the current closure will be felt keenly by many people in Brixton and further afield,” adds Dosunmu. “However, we are acutely aware of our fundamental health and safety responsibility, and that this consideration overrides all others.

“We will provide updates on the situation as this develops.”


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Comments are closed.