Sydney’s iconic Taxi Club closed its doors today after its landlord, Oxford Commercial Real Estate, changed its mind about giving the club a long-term lease arrangement.

The Taxi Club’s management informed members through its newsletter — although they are still hopeful of finding a new location for the club.

“We regretfully report that as of Monday morning on the 7th May, 2012, the Taxi Club was forced to close its doors,” the newsletter read.

“Immediately prior to the original announcement of closure, set for April 8th 2012, the Club was approached by the Paddington Bowling Club (PBC) seeking to discuss the possibilities of an amalgamation.

“A meeting was held with representatives from PBC and an encouraging, positive plan was put into motion. The plan to be undertaken would require the Taxi to enter a period of external administration, whilst a Deed of Management was put in place, and ultimately the amalgamation process completed. The foremost priority in this process was to ensure the Taxi did not cease trading.

“However, one element of this encouraging plan was to ultimately be the catalyst for its undoing. This element being the now owners of our home club venue, Oxford Commercial Real Estate. Despite Oxford having indicated to us some months ago their desire for a long-term lease arrangement, they have now turned away from wanting to continue with us as tenants of the original Taxi Club venue and are proceeding with re-developing the property. Their Council approved plans consist of converting the club venue into their own commercial office facility, with works to commence immediately.

“Though the Club has been required to cease trading, there are concerted efforts now being made to seek a suitable new location for the Club. This will continue in earnest until absolutely all avenues of possibility have been explored.”

The club’s furniture and bar, kitchen, cold storage and entertainment equipment have been advertised online to be sold by auction by May 22 on the instruction of the club’s administrator, ArmstrongWily Chartered Accountants.

The Taxi Club, formally known as the Grosvenor Club, was Sydney’s oldest surviving LGBTI licenced venue at its Flinders St location where it first opened its doors in 1956.

Earlier today the Club told the Star Observer it would not yet make an official comment.

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