My night at the BRIT Awards after-parties

Every showbiz journalist in London is hungover right now

Brits After Party 2019

If you saw a woman on your commute this morning with a pained expression, a steaming paper cup of crap coffee from the train station and last night’s mascara still smeared on her face, that may well have been me – dehydrated, dozy and desperate to get to bed.

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As any journalist worth their salt will know, the BRITs are one of the biggest nights on the showbiz calendar, with the glitterati descending on London to see a half-arsed Jack Whitehall dish out a series of slim soldier-shaped awards to drunk and disinterested pop stars.

But the real excitement of the night happens after the show finishes at 10:20pm.

BRIT Awards, Pink (Getty)

Once Pink had unharnessed herself from the ceiling, the showbiz circuit dispersed across the capital to hit up a selection of after-parties.

As a former tabloid journalist, my days of lurking outside night clubs trying to get stories from sozzled celebs are more or less behind me.

But when it comes to the BRITs, it seems you can take the girl out of the Daily Star, but you can’t take the Daily Star out of the girl; armed with a dictaphone, a friend and three quarters of a bottle of Echo Falls, I tried my luck at securing stories at some of the best BRITs after-parties.

While the BRIT Awards has its own official after-party that a few people drop in on, the real golden tickets in town are the parties thrown by record labels.

Our first stop of the night was the Warner Music and Ciroc Vodka House Party at the plush Chiltern Firehouse in Marylebone – quickly ushered through the queue, we each grabbed a glass of champagne as we eyed up the celebrities in attendance.

Vicky McClure, Brits (Getty)

While my friend fawned over Rose McGowan, who graciously gave us tips on how to write a best-seller, I looked out for Vicky McClure, Russell Tovey and Caroline Flack who were supposed to be on the list (and it turns out, they were there, we were just looking in the wrong bloody room).

But an hour in and several hastily stuffed canapes later, we had yet to find any A-Listers (and at this point, I would have settled for Matt and Luke Goss), so we moved to our second stop of the night – the Sony Music party at the Aqua Shard.

Staggering slightly in our stilettos, we had no such luck at just waltzing straight in this time round, being informed that queue jumps were for “talent only”. Ouch.

But twenty minutes later (and entertaining a slightly worse for wear man pretending to be George Ezra), we were plucked from the crowd by a PR who sent us straight to the 32nd floor.

This party was slightly more fruitful; Calvin Harris brushed past me, glacial cool, as Pink bobbed about to Semtex, who was DJ’ing at the time.

Calvi Harris(Getty)

Little Mix sat in a specially reserved booth which was well-stocked with wine, alongside our own glasses which were constantly kept topped up by eagerly attentive waiters.

But despite the free-flowing alcohol and glittering guest-list, I still hadn’t secured the sensational story I’d set out for.

Vision blurry, deafened by the music and the beginnings of blisters on my feet, I was more than ready to throw in the towel and admit defeat – but we had one more stop on our tour, the Universal Music party hosted by Bacardi Rum and Soho House at The Ned hotel.

Despite it only being a 15 minute walk between the two, the now constant throb in my toes (and sudden desperate urge for the loo – the TWO TOILETS at the Shard had stayed permanently engaged for some reason), saw me delve deep and fork out for a cab.

As we were the very last arrivals at the Ned, there were no queues, the door staff shrugging us through as we did one final search for celebrities – but it seems we’d left it too late, with Sophie Dahl and Jamie Cullum having already gone.

It was now just before 3am, my friend and I barefoot and slumped in the corner, making polite conversation with a girl who may or may not have appeared on First Dates as we waited for our Ubers to take us home.

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I may not have landed my star story, but the BRITs after-parties were a glittering night all the same.


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