The Live Music Forum

Hamish Birchall Bulletin


Wednesday 14th March 2007 - 51,600+ puts licensing/live music petition at no.3


More than 51,600 have signed the licensing/live music petition. It now stands at no.3 in the list of over 5,400 e-petitions on the Number 10 website:  (to sign)  (view top petitions)

23 MPs have signed Hugo Swire's Early Day Motion (EDM 1069) expressing concern at the impact of the Licensing Act on small-scale live music:

Please consider signing the petition, if you haven't already signed, and ask your MP to sign EDM 1069:

It is best to use your own words, but some of these points may help:

* The most recent DCMS/MORI research found that 40% of smaller venues have lost any automatic entitlement to live music as a result of the new Licensing Act ('Licensing Act 2003 - The Experience of Smaller Establishments in applying for live music authorisation', December 2006').

* There is uncertainty about the status of the 60% of smaller venues said to have live music authorisation. DCMS do not know whether live music licence conditions, where they apply, have been implemented. Unless such conditions are implemented by the venue, having live music remains illegal.

*  Under the old regime 100% of bars and restaurants licensed to sell alcohol could automatically provide one or two musicians.

* In the changeover to the new regime, all such venues were automatically granted permission to play recorded music, which also allows the provision of DJs.

* The provision of big screen broadcast sport or music is exempt, anywhere, no matter how powerfully amplified.

* The government has never provided any evidence that live music causes significant social harm, nor any evidence that live music is a greater risk as an entertainment than big screen sport in bars.

Hamish Birchall