Freedom Day: Meet Leeds DJs Annie Errez and Bobby O'Donnell tearing the roof off Mint Warehouse
17 long, slow months have passed for the Mint Warehouse team.
But the Leeds nightclub has sprung back into action with two bumper events earlier this week - kicking off at 0.01am on 'Freedom Day'.
Mint has been a stalwart of the city's nightlife scene for decades, throwing legendary parties at the former Mint Club on Harrison Street and now the large converted warehouse in Holbeck.
The venue, left desolate for months, was filled to the brim with eager clubbers who danced at the System opening party until 7am on Monday morning, followed by a day and night terrace party just hours later.
Resident DJs Annie Errez and Bobby O'Donnell have been tearing the roof off at Mint club nights and festivals for more than 15 years.
“The atmosphere was amazing,” Annie told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
“It felt like we’d never been away even though so much has happened since then. The mood was incredible.”
Bobby added: “Within seconds we felt such relief. There were apprehensions about seeing people again, but once I got here it just felt normal.
“It was so hot and I was sweating loads, but my hair was on end. It felt like a big release.”
Mint Warehouse underwent a major refurbishment just weeks before the pandemic forced it to close its doors.
The new Loft and Boiler Room spaces are finally being put to use, along with the imposing main room with a state-of-the-art new sound system.
Annie added: “What makes Mint Warehouse so special is that the owner [Shane Graham] and the team behind the scenes absolutely love it.
"It’s not just a business, they love music first and foremost and they love putting events on. That’s why it’s so good - as well as the people who come here.”
Annie and Bobby are looking forward to seeing old faces in the weeks to come, as well as welcoming in a new generation of clubbers who haven't yet had the chance to visit.
“Usually when people come to Mint Warehouse for the first time they’ve been clubbing in a few smaller places before it," Bobby said.
"But a lot of them have fast-tracked and come straight here. They’re spoiled really, it’s a great place to cut your teeth.”
The Mint team has a jam-packed summer ahead, including weekly club nights at Mint Warehouse and Mint Festival on September 24.
Newsam Park Festival, held at Newsam Park on August 21, will be the first dance music festival in Leeds this summer.
Annie said: "The festivals will be brilliant because so much effort goes into the production and getting the line-ups together. That’s been really difficult this year with having to rearrange things, but everyone has done such a good job of pulling it together at the last minute.
"They’re going to be ace - as long as the weather is good.”
Annie praised the behaviour of the clubbers who visited the opening parties and said people were overjoyed to be dancing again.
“The people have been brilliant, there haven’t been any problems whatsoever," she added.
"It went really smoothly and everyone was just having a good time - that’s what it’s all about.”
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