“I THINK Durham’s ready for some fun.”

That was the cheeky prediction of nightclub impressario Paul Rowe yesterday – hours before unleashing on the sleepy cathedral city a saucy cabaret club loaded with drag queens, Vegas-style costumes and dancing until 3am.

The Eazy Street cabaret club opened in the former Loft nightclub, in rundown North Road, Durham, to a carnival of circus performers, dancing girls and David Dale from The Showbears – a group of singing sailors who appeared on Britain’s Got Talent.

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Manager Mr Rowe said: “Durham is a lovely city full of nice people but they are starved of entertainment.

Everything’s the same.

“We are putting the fun into Durham. Durham is beautiful, but boring, and we want to brighten it up.”

Asked whether he thought the club would be a hit, he said: “I reserve judgement.

“We are taking a big risk, but we have done our homework.

There is a massive catchment area, a massive student population and I think Durham is ready for some fun.”

Last night’s opening came only two weeks after the venture was agreed and following a frantic £65,000 refit, which continued into yesterday.

Under the slogan “Durham City Will Never Be The Same”, resident host Carla Jackson, a drag act, welcomed bussed-in enthusiasts and bemused locals alike.

Mr Rowe said: “It is exciting times for everyone involved.

We are very conscious of the fact it is new for Durham and it has not had anything quite like this before.

“We feel Durham is ready for a few sequins and something uniquely Eazy Street.

“It’s fun. There’s nothing sleazy or dirty going on. It’s nothing too serious or explicit.

It’s entertainment.”

The venture follows Eazy Street Newcastle’s opening two years ago and creates 20 jobs.

The Loft closed several months ago after an unsuccessful attempt to turn it into a lap dancing club, after a 21- year-old was fatally wounded on the dancefloor and after it was stripped of a responsible operating award for a £10 allyou- can-drink offer.