I can't be arsed to read the whole thread, but I have to agree with countess richard, Jim Carroll and Joe Offer. There does seem to be a rather pathetic, head-in-the-sand defence of the mediocre by people who aren't embarrassed to be called 'folkies.'
One of the reason folk clubs have declined (to add to the many valid reasons already given) is the number of what one might call 'special people' who frequent them.
I very rarely go to any clubs when I'm in England these days, but when I lived there I used sometimes to take friends to clubs, and I would constantly have to explain or make excuses for the odd behaviour of some of the regulars. Let's face it, trad music attracts odd people. I don't know why, but it does. Some of those odd people are very good in a Glenn Gould sense, but too many are terrible and would be laughed off the stage anywhere else. Where else outside the NHS would people who can't hold a note or remember a song be encouraged to stand up and sing?
What publican in his right mind would want to fill his pub with people like that - the sort who make the regular punters snigger and walk away?
Folk clubs are declining because too many of them became cringe-worthy embarrassments. Someone above commented on a club where there were 16 Mudcatters in the audience. That should tell you something. The number of people who go to clubs in the UK is tiny. More people go fucking line-dancing! The club as a mass phenomenon is dying. Some will survive, the way Ronnie Scott's the 606, the King's Head and the 100 Club represent just about all that's left of jazz in the UK. The rest will die off.
So, to dinosaurs like The Vilan and Georgiansilver, get your heads of the the sand and learn to adapt