A PUNK rock band has been forced to find a new venue after the news of the closure of Colchester’s biggest nightclub left their biggest-ever headline set in limbo.

Colchester-based Pet Needs, who are currently on tour in the US, was disappointed to hear of the impending closure of ATIK, in Head Street, Colchester, after learning the news from the Gazette’s social media pages.

They had hoped to use the 800-capacity nightclub to play their largest headline set to date in December.

Frontman Johnny Marriott woke on Friday to frantic messages from friends and fans who had heard of the loss of the mainstay of Colchester’s night-time economy.

Gazette: Gutted - Pet NeedsGutted - Pet Needs (Image: Pet Needs)

He said: “I woke up to more than 30 different messages from people saying ATIK is shutting down.

“We were obviously really gutted, but the Colchester music scene has been really supportive with promoters reaching out to us with offers of help, and we’ve come up with an idea that I’m really excited about, and I think will be even better than what we had planned.

“We want everyone who has bought a ticket to know that the gig will still go ahead on the same day and all tickets will remain valid.

“We will, of course, offer refunds to anyone who wants one, but we’re confident that the show will be even cooler, even more exciting and even more collective.”

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The band had originally eyed up ATIK for its third Fractured Party, an annual homecoming gig named after their debut album Fractured Party Music.

The four-piece band has garnered worldwide attention, having toured Europe and the US.

Gazette: In good company - The band recently toured with The Lottery WinnersIn good company - The band recently toured with The Lottery Winners (Image: Luca Rudlin)

Last week, they wrapped up touring the UK with The Lottery Winners, who topped the UK album charts earlier this month, before crossing the pond to tour the US with The Bouncing Souls, an American punk band.

Having doubled the capacity of the venue for the second year running the band expects fans from all over the world to descend on Colchester for the weekend.

Although the new venue is yet to be announced, tickets are still available for the gig on Saturday, December 16 at www.petneedsband.com.

ATIK has been approached for comment.