The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #58909   Message #936972
Posted By: The Shambles
21-Apr-03 - 04:38 AM
Thread Name: UK Government to license Morris Dancing
Subject: RE: UK Government to license Morris Dancing
You might be interested in this letter, which appeared in the latest edition of the Lute Society's newsletter Lute News.

How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?

In mediaeval times university men used to debate how many angels could
dance on the head of a pin. If only they had lived till now! The nice Tessa Jowell, and that clever Kim Howells (or should that be Kim Il Howe?) at the Department of Culture Media and Sport have finally resolved the matter, as follows:

Under the new Licensing Bill, currently before parliament, up to 500
angels will be able to dance on the head of a pin, without a licence from their local licensing authority, provided that, firstly, the performance is not to any extent for members of the public or a section of the public, or exclusively for members of a club which is a qualifying club in relation to the provision of regulated entertainment, or for members of such a club and their guests, or if neither of the above (i.e. even if the dance is private) provided that they are not dancing for consideration (that is, a payment
made by an audience to watch the angels dancing, to the angels, or to the owner of the pin) and with a view to profit (including the profit of a charity, if the angels are dancing for charity); secondly, provided that the head of the pin has not been provided for the purpose, or for purposes which include the purpose, of enabling the dancing to take place.

If these provisos are not met, or if in any case there are more than
500 angels, then a licence will be required: either a temporary events
licence, if the angels do not dance on the pinhead more than 5 times a year, or, if they dance more than 5 times, then the pinhead will need a fully-fledged premises licence, and a more substantial fee will have to be paid. Any angel attempting to dance on the head of a pin without a licence, under circumstances where a licence is required, could be liable to a fine of £20,000 or six months in jail, as could the owner of the pin.

Under an amendment recently tabled by the government, if the head of
the pin is located in a church, then no licence will be required, and if it is located in a church hall, parish hall, or village hall, then a licence will be required, but the licensing authority will not be permitted to charge for the licence.

If the angels are in a pub or bar, the pub landlord may install a
jukebox without seeking any variation from his original premises licence provided that the angels only listen to the music, and do not attempt to dance. If they have brought their pinhead with them, and begin to dance to the music of the jukebox, then both they, and the pub licensee will be committing an offence under the new law.

    There now! What could be clearer than that?

Mrs Trellis, North Wales