London’s long standing gay institution Heaven Night Club, which opened in 1979, has been the target of a sickening bomb hoax, all while stars of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK were inside rehearsing for the upcoming performance Drag Queens Of Pop on Monday.
Following a tip off to Metropolitan Police, officers moved to evacuate the venue and nearby Charing Cross Station in an abundance of caution. Veronica Green, Tia Kofi, The Vivienne and Shania Pain have all been confirmed as at the venue rehearsing at the time of the incident.
Drag Queens Targeted?
With the venue having been closed to the public due to lockdown since late last year, it is believed it was a targeted attack as several of the stars of the hit reality tv show had tagged the venue in recent social media posts.
Confirming the news to The Sun, a source at the venue said “The drag queens had been rehearsing for their upcoming show Drag Queens of Pop and had been posting on social media that they were at Heaven.”
“The door was later found to be open and it seemed like someone had got in during the rehearsals. It seemed like a targeted attack because, due to Covid restrictions, the place is usually empty. But it appeared someone knew they were there and planted the hoax package.”
Though it turned out to be a hoax, venue owner Jeremy Joseph said in a twitter post “Whoever made that call is nothing but a sick individual.”
— Jeremy Joseph G-A-Y (@JeremyJoseph) May 3, 2021
In his post Joseph also said of terrifying ordeal that “There had been a bomb threat and everyone was evacuated, except poor me, as we waited for police dogs to arrive,”
“As the venue has been in lockdown apart from rehearsals, I had to walk round with the police and sniffer dogs to check the venue, in the meantime Charing Cross station, Villier Street & Craven Street, all evacuated.”
“I’m not going to lie, it was frightening, but I can’t praise the police dog team enough, they were amazing, they have to enter a building, not knowing if a threat is real or a hoax.”
Following the incident, The Vivien further confirmed the incident, saying “We were up in rehearsal and police stormed in. [They] informed us that we had to evacuate the venue, because there’d been a bomb scare. Somebody had phoned the police… knowing that we were at the venue rehearsing.”
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“The police were absolutely amazing. They made us feel so safe. It’s such a shame after lockdown and everybody dying to get back to work and back on stage, we’re finally there.”
Tia Kofi, retweeting Joseph’s original post added that “Today was a terrifying experience. A bomb threat was called in while rehearsing for Drag Queens of Pop with @THEVIVIENNEUK @veronicaqween and @ShaniaPain1.”
Today was a terrifying experience. A bomb threat was called in while rehearsing for Drag Queens of Pop with @THEVIVIENNEUK @veronicaqween and @ShaniaPain1. The police evacuated us and closed down the whole area. We're all safe but shaken up. Thank you for all the kind messages 🧡 https://t.co/ZkF9nyIqKF
— Tia Kofi (@TiaKofi) May 3, 2021
“The police evacuated us and closed down the whole area. We’re all safe but shaken up. Thank you for all the kind messages.”
A spokesperson for Met police has said via statement that “the circumstances in which the item was found suggest that it was part of an intentional hoax and an investigation is under way to identify the person or persons responsible.”
“There is no indication, at this early stage, of a particular motive but that will form one of the key lines of enquiry for officers as their investigation continues.”