Published by Student Direct: Mancunion
OWENS PARK’S infamous Friday-night Bop is out of action this year as rumour and speculation surround its future.
The legendary event, said to be the host of the Chemical Brothers’ first gig, has been run by Owens Park Students Association (OPSA) for many years. However, recently responsibility moved over to Owens Park management due to suspected fraud by previous OPSA staff.
Owens Park bar staff told Student Direct: Mancunion that the event had been suspended for a year but were unwilling to give reasons. The University of Manchester denies any suspension, rather saying that a decision has been made to move it to a new venue, although the reasons are unclear.
“The Bop has moved to a much bigger site [this year] at Jabez Clegg,” said a University spokesman last Thursday. “This change of venue will open it up to students from right across the campus, not just those living in Fallowfield. The event remains under the management of OPSA.”
However, speaking to Student Direct: Mancunion, David Hargreaves, bar manager at Jabez Clegg said that there was little or no link with OPSA or the University of Manchester except possibly through a third-party promoter. All staff and security are provided by Jabez rather than remaining under the management of OPSA, he said.
Yet, muddying the waters further still, is a message sent to members of a ‘Save the Bop’ Facebook group on Wednesday evening. OP Students’ Committee’s Joe Brady wrote in the message: “[The University] are going to let us keep the Bop, but they do not want it being held on campus, so we need to find [it] a new home.” There was no reference to Jabez Clegg in Brady’s message that would appear to support the University’s assertions.
When approached by Student Direct: Mancunion Brady declined to comment. Student Direct: Mancunion has been unable to contact the third-party promoter of the event in order to establish whether or not there is any link between Jabez Clegg’s Bop and the cancelled OP Bop. The mystery surrounding the event’s future remains.