The kind of place where you’d meet your new best mate in the queue to get in.

At Independent Liverpool, we’re all about good news. But some years ago ago, on an idle day in August, Liverpool received some bad news. We received an email and saw a Facebook status simply stating “Bumper 2004-2016”. At first we couldn’t accept that it was true until it was indeed confirmed by other sources. It was at that moment, our final foggy memory of illicit choices had come to an end. The Bumper sticker in our hand had been scrubbed off for a final time. Something we never thought we’d even miss. We had sunk the last shot, danced the last dance, all without realising. So here it is, our ode to Bumper, the place where everyone has a memory.

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Almost a rite of passage for anyone who’s lived in Liverpool is a night in Bumper. It managed to do things that not really every bar or club can ever end up doing. It became an institution, a ritual and a place where the worst version of yourself would be accepted. It must be one of the only places in Liverpool most people are only reminded they even went due to a big stamp on their hand and you know what, we wouldn’t have it any other way. Why is it that that our first illicit drinking hole, nightclub or lover is always the dingiest mistake we make, and one we always go back to and why is it we all can’t help but love Bumper? Whether you’ve had a good or bad memory, the one constant is that we all have a story from Bumper. Chances are we won’t be very inclined to share it, but they’re there.

photo by asenseofplace

Indie cindies covered in polka dots smoking rollies, emo’s and rockers, twenty somethings, thirty somethings, those who should have been in bed an hour ago – inside you would always find the pool of life. A cocktail of weird and wonderful people not ready to go home just yet. Bumper stands for and reminds us of good times and to be honest, much simpler times. The good old early 20’s where student loans are exchanged for suspiciously measured spirits and cokes and where the line between strangers and friends was lost, on a sticky floor with Arctic Monkeys on in the background.

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Not only has Bumper become an institution for revellers of the night, but it also did a lot for the music scene. Some of our favourite local bands to this day we first discovered within that very weirdly designed room. Although it’s in our DNA to hate queuing in Britain, some of the best time we’ve ever had were in that queue. Over the years Bumper has also become infamous for the signs they would leave outside the door, something we’ll miss seeing that added real character to Hardman Street. The funniest thing about Bumper is how it’s a bit of a guilty pleasure. Everyone heads there reluctantly in one last ditch attempt of intoxicated courtship or to show off the dance moves they’ve been storing. It’s sad that never again will you be able to turn to your friend and say “shall we go home?” only for them to shoot you a mischievous smile and reply “Bumper”. An unwritten agreement we will miss. 

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Whilst the building is still there and has evolved rather than become extinct, it didn’t and hasn’t made that goodbye any less painful. Farewell old friend. Maybe we shall meet again in another time and dance to I Bet That You Look Good On The Dance Floor together, just one more time. The shots are on us.