Credit: Porter's Cardiff on Facebook

Musicians welcome the re-opening of Porter’s after fight to save the venue

It’s a new location, but the same support for emerging artists and small businesses

MUSICIANS have welcomed the re-opening of Cardiff music venue Porter’s at its new location in Barrack Lane.

The venue faced closure last year after developers planned to turn the building into an apartment block, but financed the move with help from a £718,000 Welsh Government fund that is assisting 17 Welsh grassroots music venues.

Musicians and small business owners have praised the move and are grateful that Porter’s is still around to provide them with a platform.

Musician Kai Lewis playing a set at Porter’s old Bute Terrace location. Credit: Lowri Jenkins.

Musician Kai Lewis said Porter’s was the place that they grew up as a musician.

“Porter’s is nothing short of incredible at connecting creatives and newcomers in the music industry. I feel very lucky to have a place like Porter’s on my doorstep,” said Kai.

“The atmosphere I felt playing one of my first gigs there was full of support and enthusiasm.”

Lowri Jenkins’ first vintage clothing market stall hosted by Porter’s. Credit: Lowri Jenkins.

Lowri Jenkins runs a vintage clothing business and described Porter’s as a “crucial stepping stone” in the growth of their business after hosting their first in-person market stall.

“Porter’s is a safe space for many people, from LGBTQ+ business owners like myself, to local musicians and creative communities too. In my opinion Porter’s is a hidden gem in Cardiff,” said Lowri.

The well-known bar and venue was threatened with permanent closure at the end of its 10-year lease at Harlech Court on Bute Terrace.

Porter’s old location on Bute Terrace, now planned to be redeveloped into apartments. Credit: Caleb Tutt

A spokesperson for Porter’s said: “The moving process was really hard as we were trying to do it whilst keeping our Harlech Court venue open but we have a great team and with the help of our staff and some awesome volunteers we managed to pull it off.

“We are still getting used to all the quirks of the new place but we’re putting our stamp on it and it feels like home already.”

The Creative Wales Music Capital Fund from the Welsh Government, along with help from Cardiff council, contributed towards Porter’s relocation, as well as improving its facilities and accessibility.

“The fund has given us the chance to continue doing what we do best, curating and hosting fantastic live events that people can access for free,” said Porter’s.

Dawn Bowden, Deputy Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, said the fund “has encouraged a step change in the music industry”.

“Despite the challenging economic climate, we’ve also seen a number of new venues opening in Wales over the past 12 months. I wish Dan and the team at Porter’s well in their new venue,” said Ms Bowden.

Cardiff Council said: “Cardiff wouldn’t be Cardiff without independent venues like Porter’s’”.

“We’re focussed on enhancing the music and cultural offer in the city and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to support them to find a new home, where they will be able to thrive for years to come,” said Jennifer Burke, Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks, and Events.

The new location on Barrack Lane is just down the road from the old Harlech Court venue on Bute Terrace.

The new venue opened last month on a 20-year lease.

“The year 2024 looks very busy, very musical and lots of learning about the new space,” said Porter’s.

“Also lots of saying thank you. We’re just amazed by the support we’ve received from all quarters throughout the move and we are so happy to continue to serve Cardiff pints and free live events.”