The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90726   Message #1723978
Posted By: The Shambles
21-Apr-06 - 01:56 PM
Thread Name: Your views wanted by UK Government
Subject: RE: Your views wanted by UK Government
The latest from Mr Sharkey.

Sorry for the delay, have been very busy the last couple of days and didn't get the time I though I might have to reply.

Anyway, to try and give you a flavour of what we have been doing, please bear in-mind that the Forum will be issuing its final report later this year where we will go into this in more detail so this is very much a quick synopsis and by no means a complete account.

The Live Music Forum was given a number of tasks, including;

"Monitor the impact of the new licensing laws on live music."

This work has been going on for sometime but particularly since last February when the new regulations began to come into effect. For example, we've been polling Local Authorities pretty much every week on what number of applications they have received, how many for live music, how many venues not previously licensed for live music are now applying for a license. What percentage of applications were been automatically granted a license and how many are having to appear before a Licensing Committee because an objection had been raised. Going through every single decisions made by Licensing Committees to monitor what conditions and what type of conditions are been attached to licenses, if indeed any. So far we've completed work on about 150 LAs.

We are about to start some national research (over the next couple of months) into what happened to premises as they progressed through the new application and licensing system, especially smaller venues which provide live music.

We spent a lot of time working with LAs as they drafted their licensing policies which set out how they would apply the new rules at a local level, that's somewhere in the region of 375 Local Authorities. I guess you could check your LAs Licensing Policy Statement to see of that effort was effective.

Spent a lot of time working with booking agents, concert promoters, festival organisers, venue owners, licensing trade etc finding out what issues they had experienced with the new system, helping and advising them, were we could, in getting through the new process.

Working with a number of trade and arts based organisations in doing their own research with their membership to gauge what impact of the new regulations has, if any.

This kind of work will continue right through the summer until we publish our final report, along with any findings and recommendations the Forum might have about the impact of the new legislation. At which point he LIve Music Forum will disband.

"Promote live music generally."

A few highlights,

Helped put together the first ever Brit Award for Live Music, thanks again for all at the BPI for the support and help.

Helped with the forth coming televised Vodaphone Live Music Awards, see your screens in the autumn.

Helped find some seed funding for a scheme in the North West were school children get to start their own promotions company in local schools, they have to organise, book and perform at 3 different gigs.

Helped open the rehearsal room scheme in Wrexham and a similar scheme in South London which the Forum will go into more detail about later this year. We are current trying to scale up the rehearsal room scheme to a regional level.

Have been working with LAs to license their own property and land for live music, for example LIverpool are in the process of licensing all public spaces for live music, Brighton have adopted a similar policy, currently there is a list been complied of every single public space that has been licensed for live music in England and Wales which will be available online.

Have given hundreds of media interviews, speeches and briefings trying to raise the profile and support for live music.

Just commissioned some work on the economic impact of live music on local economies.

Apart from putting together our final impact report we are also putting together a report on what the Forum feels everyone, national government, local government, the licensing trade, music industry and society at large can do to help ensure that live music continues to thrive prosper and develop. As part of that we held a very long consultation late last year which if it helps included direct input from over 50 organisations like Jazz Services for example.

In-fact this thread and the debate next week are part of that process. We wanted to hear what musicians, performers and audiences thought might be done to help them.
I hope that gives you a feel for what has been going on but as I said it's not by any means the full picture.

We are always open to ideas so if you feel that there is something that perhaps we should be doing that we're not or something we should be doing a little differently please feel free. You can email me directly at;