Delight - the popular Portsmouth club night celebrating 20 years in business

IT has been a Delight.

Sunday, 8th December 2019, 8:00 am
Updated Thursday, 12th December 2019, 4:41 pm

Despite having rocked Portsmouth for 20 years, DJs Will Chamber and Alex Dutton are going nowhere as the enduring club night at Astoria continues to go from strength to strength.

Will, known as DJ Chump, launched the club night two decades ago after realising ‘there was nowhere that played the music I liked’.

The 36-year-old was clearly onto something as the popular night has stood the test of time while rivals have fallen by the wayside.

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Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie

The formula for success has been built on a combination of passion and an almost telepathic ability to tap into the mood of revellers, creating a unique bond amongst its party crowd.

Mix-in fun-themed nights with fancy dress and perfectly executed practical effects and a razor sharp sound system, then it is not difficult to see why 400 people pack into the club every week.

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No music is off limits. It’s about what the people want. That’s why clubbers will hear music of different genres from indie, rock, punk, metal through to R’nB and rave.

Delight club night taken in 2005 at Route 66 (now Astoria).

‘We put on music for the underbelly of the city that caters for all tastes. It is eclectic and gives people cutting edge music through to classics,’ Will said.

Alex, who joined forces with Will 10 years ago, said: ‘Delight offers a high energy feel-good party atmosphere. There’s a huge bond with all the people who go, whether they are new or have been going for years.

‘Everyone is friends and feels at ease straight away.

‘Other clubs try and imitate but they can’t compete. They don’t have the same passion and don’t have the same vibe we create.

Delight club night taken in 2005 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture : Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie

‘You go through different trends but we adapt. We have stood the test of time and our audience keep coming back. Every week we always ask the people what they want to hear. It’s all about them.’

Delight’s success has led to the creation of a trusted distinctive brand. So much so, in fact, that big names bands will perform at the club and try out their music there. ‘Now people know the sort of thing we play I get sent music from bands like Foo Fighters and Slaves,’ Will said.

Alex continued: ‘We had Slaves down here a few weeks ago. They know we have the sort of market they cater their music for. They were not as big a few years ago, but now they are headlining festivals but still come back and play here.’

Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie

So what does the future hold for Delight? ‘We are going nowhere,’ Will, named Portsmouth DJ of the year for the fourth time last year, insisted. ‘It’s the best club night in Portsmouth. We still have as much passion for it now as we did years ago, so let’s keep going.’

Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie
William Chambers and Alex Dutton are celebrating 20 years of success of their club night, Delight, that runs on every Monday at the Astoria, Guildhall walk, Portsmouth. Picture: Habibur Rahman
Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie
Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie
Delight club night taken in March 2006 at Route 66 (now Astoria). Picture: Delight / Martin Hoare & Alex McKenzie