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Belfast nightclub slammed over promotional 'eviction notice' to Belfast residents over St Patrick's Day 'anti-social behaviour'

By Claire Williamson

A Belfast nightclub has been criticised for a promotion which circulated a hoax letter to residents in the Queen's University area threatening "eviction" for anti-social behaviour on St Patrick's Day.

The letter was distributed promoting The Foundry nightclub which was styled as though official correspondence from the University featuring a similar logo.

The club has said that the promotion was carried out without their knowledge and apologised for any distress caused.

The letter addresses the tenant and says it is in reference to "anti-social behaviour" on St Patrick's Day.

In recent years the Holyland area of south Belfast has become infamous for large numbers of young people taking part in anti-social behaviour to the distress of residents.

There were 15 arrests in total over the St Patrick's weekend and police said the behaviour in the area had "generally been better than in previous years".

The letter from the club reads: "It has been brought to our attention that during the St Patrick's Day celebrations of this year a number of addresses were taken note of due to continual breach of appropriate behaviour standards whilst at University.

"One of the addresses noted was your own.

"For this reason we have been left with no other choice but to serve you with an EVICTION NOTICE as part of the Residents, Landlord and Community Scheme introduced in September of this year."

"We require you to arrange a meeting with our residential liaison officer in room 7B of the SU within 7 days to discuss your future at University".

It then reveals that it is a promotion for the Belfast nightclub.

"Hope we had you for a second, now that weekend of absolute mayhem is over!" and goes on to promote the club night.

South Belfast MLA for the Green Party Clare Bailey called it a "cheap stunt".

She told the Belfast Telegraph: “This is a cheap stunt and will cause concern for many people, residents and students alike.

“I drew attention to the letter so that people would know it’s junk mail.

“It’s junk mail that makes light of issues such as eviction, homelessness and anti-social behaviour.

“I’ve spoken with many people in South Belfast who have said this is not a clever or funny stunt”. 

Queen's University said it was made aware of the letter and called it "unacceptable".

“Queen’s University was made aware this morning of the distribution of a hoax letter by The Foundry nightclub to residents neighbouring the University. 

"Queen’s works in constructive partnership with residents, the PSNI, Belfast City Council and other key stakeholders throughout the year and, in particular, over the St Patrick’s Day period. The distribution of this inappropriate promotional material is unacceptable and we have alerted Belfast City Council.”

In response the club said that the promotion was carried out without their knowledge and apologised for any distress caused.

A spokesman said: "This promotion was carried out without our knowledge or consent and Foundry would would like to make it clear we take our place in the community and our duties to tackling anti-social behaviour seriously.

"These have been the actions of an over exuberant outside promoter, however we would still like to extend our apologies to anyone caused any inconvenience or distress by this letter."

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