I'm posting here because I feel that there is more chance of the points being taken seriously. The causes of the spat at the Jug is a symptom of a new world order for the first time in mans history people with strong feelings on any subject will have access to other like minded people all over the world almost instantly. At the same time good transport networks mean that people can move relatively large distances easily and cheaply This has been used negatively by football hooligans, and anarchists, and benignly by social groups. The problem is that our culture hasn't been able to keep pace with the speed of technological development. People as individuals and groups are naturally protective of their space, weather or not this is a good thing is irrelevant, it's a fact. For various reasons Places change, and sometimes folk clubs/sessions lose their venue, in the past the organisers would have gone round some of the other local pubs within a couple of miles. The members of the club would be relative locals, and some would have changed their allegiances and the new venue would become their local. Some of the regulars of the old club would drop out, "can't stand that landlord/beer/pub", and the club would have gained a few new members from the pubs established members. The difference is when people are travelling a distance the chance of the folk club venue becoming someone's regular haunt decreases. The Landlord will do some mental arithmetic if the amount he takes on the club night exceeds the amount he loses because George who is in 6 nights a week and drinks 5 pints a night moves to the Cat and Fiddle up the road 'cos he can't cope with the crush on club night. If the takings are good, and he's gaining a few new locals to replace George then he'll go with it. If all the people coming to the club are travelling, with the drink driving laws the won't drink much, (to balance this the profit margin on soft drinks is higher), they are only going to come in on club nights, They are not part of the community so might discourage more regular trade. With these factors the equation becomes more complicated, and will make it more difficult for clubs to survive.
People say "if you came to my club you would be made welcome". Think about it, most clubs/ sessions would be ecstatic to recruit 15-20 new members, in ones, and twos over a six month period, but a block of 15 -20 people, an established group, with it's own group dynamics all turning up together with it's own "in jokes" and group personality, would they be welcomed then? There would be a feeling that it was a take over bid , and that would be what it would be no matter how well intentioned, the new group would want to make the place more like what they used to have. Even at folk festivals where everyone is in the melting pot for the weekend, have you never experienced the devastating effect that the Abbercrombie Folk Club(Apologies if there is an abbercrombie folk club) has when they all turn up at the singers session, and go through their routine. I want mudcat to be part of the solution, not part of the problem.