Sunderland’s nightlife features on TV’s Bouncers

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SUNDERLAND’S nightlife will be put in the spotlight after a TV crew followed the highs and lows of working on city doors.

Tonight’s episode of Bouncers will focus on staff at Passion in Holmeside, as they attempt to keep Wearside drinkers safe.

Cameras filmed head of security Jeff White and his protégé Erdem Ciftci at the city centre club for about six weeks over the summer as part of the six-week documentary series.

The programme shows Erdem, 23, who has worked on the doors for three years, along with Jeff, 48, as they man the doors during the club’s various nights such as a student night on Mondays and rock night on Thursdays.

Jeff from Peterlee, who has been a bouncer for more than 23 years, says he’s noticed many changes over the years.

“When I first started, I would say that doormen were more respected,” he said.

Jeff also admitted the job increasingly involved the restraining unruly punters. “All the lads know I’m capable of doing stuff. It’s not something I like to see, but everyone knows I can if I need to. There’s ample amount of people training to be doormen now, but they don’t always know what they’re doing.”

Jeff’s been working on the doors in Passion since it opened five years ago.

“It’s a good place to work,” he said. “They have loads of different nights, so you get a good variety of people coming along.”

The show also features Gordon Smallwell, 49, who is one of the marshals employed to supervise the city’s taxi queues,

“It’s unfortunate that you need marshals on places you wouldn’t expect, like a taxi queue,” said Gordon. “But what would happen if we weren’t there? You could have stopped someone getting their head kicked in, even killed. You’re a counsellor, social worker, philosopher, friend, enemy, sometimes just a shoulder to cry on – it’s all rolled into one.”

Wearside party-goers featured in the show include 39-year-old grandmother Maxine Brewer who was filmed out with her niece and friends.

Maxine said: “Sometimes people will say ‘Grow up – go out with people your own age. What you doing going out with young girls?’But I have a good night and I enjoy myself and who are you to tell me what to do? If I go out and have a good night with the girls, there’s no harm done to anybody.”

l Bouncers is on Channel 4 tonight at 10pm.