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Licencing Act — live music

Comment 4th July 2010

Scap the previous government's highly unintelligent Licensing Act which criminalises LIVE music-making!

Especially vulnerable are musicians and venues engaged in small-scale performances —whether in schools, hospitals, restaurants or in licensed premises.

The costly and time-consuming bureaucracy involved stifles spontaneity and creativity.

Musicians and those who appreciate live music [instead of the awful canned "muzak" and other cacophony we so often hear in public places] want their freedom back! 

Why does this matter?


To quote from the Live Music Forum's recent petition to the government in June:

"Under the Licensing Act, a performance by one musician in a bar, restaurant, school or hospital not licensed for live music could lead to a criminal prosecution of those organising the event. Even a piano may count as a licensable 'entertainment facility'. By contrast, amplified big screen broadcast entertainment is exempt. The government says the Act is necessary to control noise nuisance, crime, disorder and public safety, even though other laws already deal with those risks. Musicians warned the Act would harm small events. About 50% of bars and 75% of restaurants have no live music permission. Obtaining permission for the mildest live music remains costly and time-consuming. In May, the Culture, Media and Sport Committee recommended exemptions for venues up to 200 capacity and for unamplified performance by one or two musicians. The government said no. But those exemptions would restore some fairness in the regulation of live music and encourage grassroots venues."

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