The Live Music Forum
Hamish Birchall Bulletin
Sunday 25th July 2010 - New Parilamentary motion for live music exemption
Conservative MP John Whittingdale, chair of the all party Culture Media and Sport Committee, has tabled an Early Day Motion calling on the government '... to bring forward proposals for an exemption to the Licensing Act for audiences of 200 to tackle the negative impact with regards to small venues hosting live performances.'
Intriguingly, Labour members make up the majority of the 21 MPs who have signed so far.
EDMs are rarely debated, but can generate useful publicity for a cause, especially if signed by a large number of MPs. Why not ask your MP to sign, if they have not already done so? Contact via www.theyworkforyou.com (identifies your MP from your postcode).
In May 2009 the CMS Committee concluded its public inquiry into the Licensing
Act. It found that the Act had harmed small scale performances, and recommended
that new exemptions should be introduced for live music in venues with
a capacity of up to 200, and for one or two unamplified performers:
Lord Clement-Jones' new live music bill would, if successful, implement
an exemption for gigs with an audience of up to 200 and allow unamplified
live music without a restriction on the number of musicians. Its 2nd reading
debate has not yet been scheduled, but may take place later this year:
Cutting red tape for live music is a Coalition government commitment:
Responsibility for licensing is now shared between the Home Office (alcohol)
and DCMS (regulated entertainment). DCMS licensing minister John Penrose
recently hinted in Parliament at a 'radical' solution for live music (21
Full text of John Whittingdale's EDM 546 'Live performances':
'That this House celebrates the cultural value of live performances in
enriching and entertaining communities; notes that small venues hosting
live performances are the bedrock of the entertainment industry, providing
opportunities for artists to begin their careers; is concerned that the
implementation of the Licensing Act 2003 has meant that there has been
a decline in the number of small venues wishing to put on live performances;
and therefore calls on the Government to bring forward proposals for an
exemption to the Licensing Act for audiences of 200 to tackle the negative
impact with regards to small venues hosting live performances.'
General EDM info: