Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?

Related threads:
How old is Brit trad of music in pubs? (88)
PEL: Mummers stopped Cerne Abbas (101)
PEL: demo - pictures (14)
BS: Is Kim Howells an arsehole? (65)
Licensing Bill - How will it work ? (331)
Weymouth Folk Festival (UK) (120)
A little more news on Licensing (158)
Killed by the PEL system Part 2 (93)
The New Star Session R.I.P. PELs (55)
PEL Problems in Hull (39)
PELs: Are we over-reacting? (74)
Circus PELs - I told you so! (16)
PEL Mk II: UK Government at it again (24)
PEL stops session in Cheshire (78)
Lyr Add: PEL Song: A PEL Protest (Julie Berrill) (27)
PELs - Letters to important folk. (50)
Sign a E Petition to 10 Downing St PELs (506) (closed)
PEL: Architect)?) Andrew Cunningam (11)
Licensing Bill moves on -OUR FUTURE (286) (closed)
UK Government to license Morris Dancing (68) (closed)
EFDSS on the Licensing Bill - PELs. (38)
PEL: Doc Roew gets through to Minister !!! (11)
PELs Dr Howells on Mike Harding Show. (106)
From Eliza Carthy & Mike Harding PELs (36)
Common's Early Day Motion 331 (new)(PEL) (69)
DANCING OUTBREAK! and definition. PELs (16)
PEL threads. links to all of them. (50)
BS: Village Greens and licences (3) (closed)
PEL's: News Blackout! (53)
PEL: Billy Bragg BBC1 Monday nite (17)
PELs: Exemptions? (107)
Petition Clarification (PELs) (9)
PEL debate on BBC TV Now. (6)
further 'dangers' with the PEL (24)
Stupid Music Law. (8)
Howells (now) asks for help PELs (68)
PEL : MPs' replies to your e-mails (40)
PEL: Where does Charles Kennedy stand? (10)
PEL: NCA Campaign free Seminar (18)
PEL: Howells on BBCR1 TONIGHT! (45)
PEL : Hardcopy Petition (44)
PELs Government v MU & lawyers (48)
PEL Pages (5)
Human Rights Committee AGREES! PELs (20)
Churches now exempt from PELs (55)
Lyr Add: PEL 'Freedom to sing' song (12)
Lyr Add: PEL Protest song (14)
Can YOU help The Blue Bell session? (9)
PEL: Urgent soundbites - CBC interview (25)
BS: Kim Howells, but NOT PELS for a change (8) (closed)
PEL: Billy Bragg on Question Time 6th Feb (15)
Kim Howells (PEL) (85)
PEL - A Reply From An MP. (22)
BS: What is PEL? (3) (closed)
PEL - 'Demo' Fleetwood 30th Jan 2003 (25)
PEL – Robb Johnson on R3, 1215h, 26/1. (8)
New PEL. An alternative argument. (31)
PEL: DEMO 27 JANUARY 2003 (95)
PEL: VERY URGENT - CONTACT yr MP TODAY (46)
Poet against PEL - welcome Simon (10)
PEL: First Lord's defeat of the bill (10)
PEL - 'Demo' Fleetwood 23rd Jan (5)
kim howells does it again (PEL) (69)
PEL UK - Unemployed Artist Dancer - look (22)
PEL hit squads! (16)
PELs for beginners (26)
PEL: Latest rumour/lie? It's gone away? (3)
PEL: but not music (9)
Folking Lawyers (PEL) (26)
MU campaign - Freedom of Expression (36)
PEL- Enforcement: How? (8)
PEL: Inner working of Minister's minds? (9)
PROTEST DEMO WITH GAG (PEL) (10)
PEL: What activities to be criminalised? (29)
A Criminal Conviction for Christmas? (PEL) (45)
PEL - Idea (34)
Glastonbury Festival Refused PEL (5)
MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music (23)
Sessions under threat in UK? (101)
PELs of the past (13)
BS: PELs and roller skates. (1) (closed)
PELs UK Music needs your HELP (64)
Fighting the PEL (43)
URGENT MESSAGE FOR THE SHAMBLES (22)
Lyr Add: The Folk Musician's Lament (a PEL protest (2)
BS: Queen's speech, and licensing reforms (32) (closed)
PELs UK BBC Breakfast TV Monday (1)
PEL: Licensing Reform? (46)
BS: PELs in Scotland (12) (closed)
BS: The Cannon Newport Pagnell UK - no PEL! (18) (closed)
Action For Music. PELs (28)
Killed by the PEL system (66)
TV sport vs live music in pubs. HELP (6)
PEL and the Law: 'Twas ever thus (14)
EFDSS letter to UK Government HELP! (2)
24 July 2002 Day of Action - PELs (77)
Help: PELs & The Folk Image (12)
Official 'No tradition' 2 (PELs) (55)
Is this man killing folk music? (19)
We have PEL - Rose & Crown Ashwell, 23/6 (2)
BS: Vaults Bar, Bull ,Stony Stratford - PEL (4) (closed)
What is folk ? - OFFICIAL (26)
Official: No tradition of music in pubs (92)
UK catters be useful TODAY (70)
Help Change Music In My Country (102)
PEL-More questions (7)
NEWS for visitors wanting to play in UK (56)
Nominate for a Two in a Bar Award -UK (11)
USA- HELP Where is Dr Howells? (13)
BS: URGENT UK contact your MP TONITE (18) (closed)
Write an Email for Shambles? Part 2 (75)
UK TV Cove Session/The Shambles (24)
All UK folkies take note - the law!!! (68)
BS: Tenterden weekend (and PELs) (11) (closed)
PEL (UK) (25)
Will you write an Email for Shambles? (111) (closed)
Important - Attention All Mudcatters (99)
Council Bans Morris Part 2 (73)
Council Bans Morris Dancing (103)
Day of action for live music 19th July (44)
Traditional activities and the law (13)
Sessions under threat in UK PART 2 (15)
Making Music Is Illegal. (56)
Urgent Help Required!! Threat to UK Sessions (11)


The Shambles 08 Sep 01 - 07:31 AM
The Shambles 08 Sep 01 - 07:45 AM
Gareth 08 Sep 01 - 08:19 AM
Gareth 08 Sep 01 - 09:20 AM
Morticia 08 Sep 01 - 09:42 AM
GUEST 08 Sep 01 - 10:20 AM
Dave the Gnome 08 Sep 01 - 12:50 PM
Roger in Sheffield 09 Sep 01 - 05:06 AM
The Shambles 09 Sep 01 - 06:25 AM
Gareth 09 Sep 01 - 09:17 AM
Gareth 09 Sep 01 - 01:55 PM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 09 Sep 01 - 10:37 PM
The Shambles 10 Sep 01 - 02:15 AM
The Shambles 10 Sep 01 - 02:33 AM
The Shambles 10 Sep 01 - 01:03 PM
Dave the Gnome 11 Sep 01 - 05:32 AM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 08:38 AM
GeorgeH 11 Sep 01 - 09:19 AM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 09:54 AM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 09:57 AM
GUEST 11 Sep 01 - 01:25 PM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 01:33 PM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 01:58 PM
The Shambles 11 Sep 01 - 02:01 PM
McGrath of Harlow 11 Sep 01 - 02:14 PM
Gareth 12 Sep 01 - 06:38 PM
The Shambles 17 Sep 01 - 03:51 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Sep 01 - 04:26 PM
Dave the Gnome 17 Sep 01 - 07:40 PM
The Shambles 18 Sep 01 - 01:55 PM
Dave the Gnome 19 Sep 01 - 09:07 AM
The Shambles 24 Sep 01 - 02:28 AM
The Shambles 26 Sep 01 - 05:35 PM
The Shambles 26 Sep 01 - 05:40 PM
Dave the Gnome 27 Sep 01 - 09:45 AM
GUEST,Peter Jones 27 Sep 01 - 09:52 AM
The Shambles 27 Sep 01 - 10:31 AM
GUEST,puzzled 27 Sep 01 - 01:37 PM
Gareth 27 Sep 01 - 03:01 PM
The Shambles 28 Sep 01 - 02:43 PM
The Shambles 03 Oct 01 - 01:38 PM
The Shambles 06 Oct 01 - 03:43 AM
Roger in Sheffield 06 Oct 01 - 04:03 AM
The Shambles 06 Oct 01 - 06:30 AM
The Shambles 06 Oct 01 - 07:06 AM
The Shambles 06 Oct 01 - 04:32 PM
Dave the Gnome 07 Oct 01 - 01:25 PM
The Shambles 08 Oct 01 - 01:29 PM
The Shambles 10 Oct 01 - 05:34 PM
The Shambles 13 Oct 01 - 05:45 AM
The Shambles 13 Oct 01 - 05:59 AM
The Shambles 21 Oct 01 - 05:32 AM
pavane 21 Oct 01 - 05:44 PM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Oct 01 - 07:07 PM
Roger in Sheffield 22 Oct 01 - 11:50 AM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Oct 01 - 04:31 PM
The Shambles 24 Oct 01 - 06:03 PM
The Shambles 24 Oct 01 - 06:09 PM
The Shambles 24 Oct 01 - 06:26 PM
Gareth 24 Oct 01 - 07:13 PM
The Shambles 28 Oct 01 - 08:07 PM
The Shambles 29 Oct 01 - 02:38 AM
The Shambles 29 Oct 01 - 02:47 AM
The Shambles 29 Oct 01 - 05:42 PM
The Shambles 30 Oct 01 - 03:51 PM
McGrath of Harlow 30 Oct 01 - 04:14 PM
The Shambles 30 Oct 01 - 04:33 PM
The Shambles 31 Oct 01 - 05:36 PM
The Shambles 04 Nov 01 - 01:05 PM
Roger in Sheffield 04 Nov 01 - 01:33 PM
Gareth 04 Nov 01 - 01:46 PM
Gareth 04 Nov 01 - 01:57 PM
Gareth 04 Nov 01 - 02:05 PM
The Shambles 05 Nov 01 - 06:19 AM
The Shambles 06 Nov 01 - 05:33 AM
The Shambles 29 Nov 01 - 09:22 AM
The Shambles 01 Dec 01 - 12:23 PM
McGrath of Harlow 01 Dec 01 - 01:39 PM
The Shambles 01 Dec 01 - 03:20 PM
The Shambles 03 Dec 01 - 01:56 PM
Herga Kitty 04 Dec 01 - 04:00 PM
Herga Kitty 04 Dec 01 - 07:02 PM
The Shambles 04 Dec 01 - 07:22 PM
The Shambles 05 Dec 01 - 06:11 PM
McGrath of Harlow 05 Dec 01 - 07:21 PM
The Shambles 06 Dec 01 - 05:15 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 06 Dec 01 - 05:25 AM
Gareth 08 Dec 01 - 03:10 PM
The Shambles 09 Dec 01 - 11:59 AM
Gareth 12 Dec 01 - 03:51 PM
The Shambles 12 Dec 01 - 04:50 PM
Gareth 12 Dec 01 - 07:23 PM
The Shambles 14 Dec 01 - 07:54 AM
Herga Kitty 19 Dec 01 - 03:56 PM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Dec 01 - 04:23 PM
The Shambles 19 Dec 01 - 04:50 PM
The Shambles 20 Dec 01 - 01:51 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:













Subject: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 07:31 AM

I am constantly amazed at the apathy shown generally in the UK. We as a nation seem to think that our officials know what is best for us, even when they clearly demonstrate that they do not.

The whole fabric of what makes traditional folk events special, is now under serious treat form these official's interpretation of the law, made mainly in ignorance of the effect is having.

We do care, for in these pages you will see us arguing over the smallest detail or even what the 'bloody music is. There will be people who quibble with this thread and my methods too.

IF YOU CARE ABOUT THE MUSIC YOU LOVE?__________ACT NOW!

For no one else cares! Please give your views and comments to the following NOW?

And keep on doing it………………………Until we win!

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council

Please also Copy to the local paper. letters@dorsetecho.co.uk, the shorter the better.

To all UK Folkies who may (understandably) not wish their own councils to pay their events, the same attention and are reluctant to get involved.

Would you please join with the many UK folkies who have, and in particlar with those overseas to help win this BATTLE here in Weymouth and Portland?

We did not choose to fight this battle but we cannot afford to loose it.

A victory here will ensure that a clear signal will go out to all local authorities and make it impossible for similar action to ever take place again.

We have lost too many fine events already and cannot afford to loose here, as this will mean that the situation will continue..........THERE WILL NEVER BE A BETTER OPPORTUNITY TO CHANGE THIS AND SEND A VERY CLEAR MESSAGE.

The message that they are currently receiving is that they can do exactly as they please and the vast majority of people, UK folkies, directly affected and who should care, do not care enough to stop them...........

PLEASE HELP!

Write an Email for Shambles?, will give you the detailed background to this.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 07:45 AM

See also UK Folkies - the law

This contains the latest justification of their actions, from the Chief Executive of the council. See if you can understand what he is saying, let alone agree with him?

Let's sort this out NOW, It will prevent me starting any more threads and will stop you all having to read (or try to ignore) them. *smiles*

Thanks Roger


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 08:19 AM

And here on a Website are the last 3 letters pages of the Dorset Echo.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 09:20 AM

CliclK Here for Dorset Echo Pages - finger trouble

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Morticia
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 09:42 AM

letter written and copy PM'd to you,Roger.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 10:20 AM

Shambles - give it a rest. Everyone's read about your plight, many have helped. Those that haven't probably don't want to.

Why don't you just pay your 55p and shut up?

Folk music won't 'die' one way or the other


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 12:50 PM

OK - email sent. Now how about a little help for the plight of our club and those others who are being forced to pay exhoribitant ammounts towards the upkeep of already rich songwriters? See BS: PRS - Friend or Foe? for more details.

Cheers

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 05:06 AM

guest it's not about 55p and never was, its about pubs having to subsidize sessions. If a landlord has twenty people in the pub that's OK, if those people start singing together he is then obliged to pay 365x55p to allow them to do so - for safety reasons. It can't be right surely?
Folk music won't die, of course not, but ordinary folk will be denied the chance to sing and make music together without being charged

The problem I think is that we all have to work together or not at all. If only a handful of people make fuss then the danger is that nothing changes, or worse that attention is drawn to all those pubs that are being overlooked at present
Its a real shame, the case looks so strong for freeing pubs from this catch that I would like to keep fighting.
On the other hand I have not received any support from the local area, no willingness to fight this
I am worried that if this is pursued without greater support then it could be very damaging.
Yesterday I mentioned this to McFat in an otherwise empty pub and felt very guilty indeed when I noticed the landlady was listening and looking very worried.
So where do we go from here?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 06:25 AM

I think Weymouth and Portland Borough Council have set the exapmle to follow............

They just keep on, with their now discredited arguments, and nothing to gain because they think they have no choice.

We have NO CHOICE but to use everthing in our power to ensure that the traditional activities that others appear to value can continue as they have always done, in the UK.

There is another article in the Stage. The justification the council is using in this article, is surreal. All we have to do is to keep getting them to publicly attempt to justify their actions and they will strangle themselves, with their own words.

It may appear that UK folkies know about this situation, but they do not.

I have been playing in sessions this weekend at Swanage festival. No one playing in them that I have spoken to, was aware!!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 09:17 AM

At the risk of boreing catters to tears the problems of interpretation of the Public Entertainment Licencese have now attracted the attention of "Stage" weekly news paper.

All press coverage can be found here.

PRESS COVERAGE

Iam sorry if they take a little time to load but much of this is JPG files.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 01:55 PM

Attention - since posting the above link I have had a few complaints that the above links don't always work.

Now as I am "piggybacking" these pages using spare capacity on the particular site, and am trying to expand so that there are cross links and an index to bring all relavent details to one place could I ask catters to PM me if there are any difficulties in getting through. Details as to error mesages and the name and version of your browser would help. Confidentiality is assured.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 10:37 PM

Refresh, lets keep going with this one, today it is this pub, next week it could be ours.Fist they came for.......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Sep 01 - 02:15 AM

Then they came for me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Sep 01 - 02:33 AM

Kevin's fine song on the subject


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Sep 01 - 01:03 PM

Feedback on The Stage articles will be welcomed

Letters Editor
The Stage Newspaper
47 Bermondsey Street
London
SE1 3XT

Or people can e-mail editorial_listings@thestage.co.uk
or fax on 020 7357 9287

feedback would be great!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 05:32 AM

I emailed Ian Locke on the basis that as it was tourism that would be most affected he may apply extra pressure. I also remebered that in the early days of this discussion he was at least sympathetic. Here is the reply -

Dear Mr Polshaw

In reply to your email I would make the following points:
1. The Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence granted by the Council and can hold folk sessions without difficulty.
2. There is probably more live music in pubs in Weymouth and Portland than anywhere else of comparable size.
3. The issues as to public safety and nuisance suffered by neighbours apply whatever the source of music. We have currently an application from the Cove House Inn to extend hours for music outside and we have 4 or 5 objections from neighbours. They have a legitimate point of view too.
4. Any affect on tourism is not being caused by actions of the Council which have been legally and reasonably correct but by misinformation as to what the real situation is.
5. Noone has yet been able to point to a local authority which takes a different view. All the ones we have consulted take a similar line to us.

Regards

Ian Locke

Would anyone care to refute any of Mr Lockes comments? If the Cove can have music sessions whenever they want what exactly is the issue? If it is neighbours rasing objections to extending the sessions outside don't they, as Mr Locke points out, have 'a legitimate point of view too'?

Not siding with the council at all but is there some 'mis-information' here? Can someone put the record straight?

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 08:38 AM

The Coves PEL expired on the 30th June, after being valid for only 6 weeks, but charged the full fee. The pub is in the process of applying for a new one.

The period for the public to comment on this application is up or nearly so. There have been the same objections as last time (noise, unconnected with the session), so a Public Hearing, with a panel of councillors will now decide.

This application to extend the outside hours for music also, he rather cleverly refers to, is because of the silly restriction placed on the last one. The one that prevented Morris.

But the PEL has expired and they did not notice until the licensee pointed it out.

The objections are to the new application for the expired PEL. Not for anything that was not applied for previously.

Mr Locke is totally wrong..........You may wish to point this out to him and the local paper letters@dorsetecho.co.uk?

You must remember that Mr Locke is a solicitor. Good try Mr Locke, but he has shot himself in the foot.....Thanks Dave.

Dave or anyone else, PM or Email me at roger.gall@btinternet.com if you are still unsure.

Yes there is mis-information here, It must be pretty clear by now who is providing it too?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GeorgeH
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 09:19 AM

Dave the K

Here's my comments on the points you make:


1) It had a licence which expired. I believe this was a
    short-term licence. In any case the essential argument
    is that such an event should not require a licence.

2) Impossible to test - personally I'm highly dubious.

3) Totally untrue. Music from a disco, or a duo (no
    matter how extensively amplified) would be unaffected
    by the council's ban on "sessions", since such
    activities would not need a PEL. (Nusance or danger
    from such sources COULD be used to oppose renewal of
    the pub's "Alcohol" icence but this seldom happens.)

4) Also largely untrue. The council has to decide on what
    interpretation it puts on the law. While some other
    councils share its view, many others take a different
    view. Even IF the council is LEGALLY correct (and
    certainly it can argue that it follows a possible
    interpretation of the law) it is NOT reasonable.
    Mr Locke has twice refused to explain to me how the
    danger/nuisance of a session is greater than that of
    other events which CLEARLY do not require a PEL.

5) I do not believe this. I could cite a number (look
    at almost any town-based Folk Festival).

In short, Mr Locke is being - at best - "economical with the actuality" or whatever! He's also claimed elsewhere that there's been no ban on morris dancing. His grasp of the facts seems sadly limited!

George


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 09:54 AM

Weymouth and Portland Borough council

It is probably more accurate for Mr Locke to refer to five comments on the new application to replace the expired PEL?

Four of these will be noise objections to a once yearly outdoor charity fund-raiser, involving amplified music.

The other will be a letter of support for the application, from me. Exactly the same as for the first application for the PEL that expired on 30 June 2001

For I am sure he would not wish to mis-inform anyone?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 09:57 AM

we have 4 or 5 objections from neighbours. They have a legitimate point of view too.

That is a first.......He states that I have a legitimate point of view too.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 01:25 PM

given today's events - not too 'urgent' after all...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 01:33 PM

Todays events do tend to put our problems into perspective. One does not feel like making music at all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 01:58 PM

I will go on with this, even harder, as I can't allow the negative aspect of this life to win, even in such a relativly minor issue as this one.

Let us make sure that we can try and bring some positve elements into our world..........


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 02:01 PM

Thoughts/prayers for those involved


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 11 Sep 01 - 02:14 PM

"Better to light a candle than curse the darkness" may sound like old hippy-trippy stuff, but it makes sense. And that is what this is about really.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Sep 01 - 06:38 PM

More Press Coverage

CLICK HERE

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 03:51 PM

As of this morning, and at at his request, Mr Grainger has been supplied with all the imformation he could possibly require.

Examples in the media and, in their own words from many musicians up and down the land, of sessions and gigs suffering from the over zealous enforcement of current entertainment licensing.

These are still being supplied to him and you could add to this.....

It remains to be seen what he will now do with this requested information. I wonder for example if he will present it to the elected members of his council?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 04:26 PM

I'd have thought it would be quite appropriate to send the councillors a copy of this dossier.

Anything further heard about that legal article by Suzanne something which Richard Bridges was chasing up?

(In the present context this may seem like rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic. But I've always felt differently about that cliche since I heard that there actually was someone rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic. He was building a life raft, and it worked and he survived. I think that is actually true, but if it isn't it should be.)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 17 Sep 01 - 07:40 PM

No reply from Mr Locke about my last letter casting doubts on his reply, Roger. I'll keep you posted.

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 18 Sep 01 - 01:55 PM

With Dave's permission this is the letter to which he refers. It has not been replied to......yet.

Dear Mr Locke

Thank you for your reply. However, having re-checked my sources, I believe that the only mis-information being provided is by you.

I would be grateful if you could address the following points before I contact the press.

1. The Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence granted by the Council and can hold folk sessions without difficulty.

Is it true that the Cove applied for a PEL on 01/02/01, obtained it only on 16/05/01 and that in July the licensee pointed out to your Licensing Manager that this licence had expired on 30/06/01? If so can you confirm and apologise for the misinformation you have supplied?
Would you confirm that as of the date of your communication to me, The Cove House Inn does not have a valid PEL and that given your strict interpretation of the law and the word performer, would be curently illegal there, if more than two people were singing?

3. The issues as to public safety and nuisance suffered by neighbours apply whatever the source of music. We have currently an application from the Cove House Inn to extend hours for music outside and we have 4 or 5 objections from neighbours. They have a legitimate point of view too.

In the light of the above, would you confirm that your Chief Executive Mr Grainger, in a letter to Mr Gall, stated on 31/08/01 that: "I should make it clear that there have never been any allegations, that we know of, that the Thursday sessions that you take part in threaten public safety, or produce obtrusive noise to neighbours".

At the moment you know the nature of the complaints you refer to. I understand that this will soon be public knowledge. Could you please confirm that you have four or five comments on the application all with "a legitimate point of view" but could you please confirm that these are to an application for a Public Entertainment Licence and that all of these are objections to this application, as you stated?

I have subsequently been informed that that you are responsible for public licensing matters. is there any reason that you did not correct my assumption that you were not?

4. Any affect on tourism is not being caused by actions of the Council which have been legally and reasonably correct but by misinformation as to what the real situation is.

Given the "misinformation" that you have supplied in your reply to me, I will make no further comment other than to question whether you are in fact aware of what "the real situation is", or if you are aware, you do not appear to wish to inform others exactly what "the real situation is".

5. Noone has yet been able to point to a local authority which takes a different view. All the ones we have consulted take a similar line to us

Others may have not taken the action or attempted to justify it. Is imposing a bad policy on the people your borough, and blaming it on central Government, just because others may, the action of the enlightened borough your PR, claims to be?

I look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 19 Sep 01 - 09:07 AM

14:07 BST. 19/09/2001. Still not a word from Mr. Locke.

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Sep 01 - 02:28 AM

Has there been any other replies?

It would be most helpful to have more examples of this "misinformation", from the council. As this accusation appears to be their only defence of their actions.

It has tended to work, when the people they are talking to, do not press them too hard on the details of what the council have actually done.

Mr Grainger is going to let the councillors know the 'dossier' exists and he will refer to it............He is not going to copy it to them.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 26 Sep 01 - 05:35 PM

The latest from The Chief Executive Mr Grainger

25 September 2001
Dear Mr Gall

I am writing further to you letter of 2 September 2001, and your subsequent telephone calls to my personal assistant and myself. I have to say I am very disappointed in the contents of your letter. We are obviously going nowhere, as you continue to argue that the Council has an incorrect interpretation of the law, despite the very full response I gave to you at out meeting, and summarised in my letter of 31 August.

I cannot be any clearer about our view on this matter, than repeat to you Paragraph 1 and 2 of Schedule 1 to the Local government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act of 1982.

The events at the Cove House Inn clearly fall within this definition and it is this council's view that there are no specific exemptions under the 1964 Licensing Act that render the requirement for a licence unnecessary. Various people, including you suggest that the Brearly-v-Morley case of 1899 means that the public are not performers. The circumstances in which the entertainment takes place at the Cove House Inn are quite different from those in that case, and in our view, make such an interpretation implausible.

As you know, Mr Birchall has also raised particular questions about the definition of performers. Mr Locke will respond to Mr Birchall and I will ensure you receive a copy of that reply. Once I have supplied a copy of Mr Lockes's reply to you, I do not propose to keep corresponding on arguments of law. I acknowledge that you have a different interpretation. That is your right, but ultimately, only the courts can decide and I would not wish any party to waste money unnecessarily. I have set out many times justification for our stance and I have no intention of repeating it again in the future. In any event, the princple paties involved are the licensee of the Cove House Inn and the Council, and I am not aware that either of these parties is looking for the matter to be taken further.

As far as the other issues you mention in your letter are concerned, these can be dealt with very simply.

Your paragraph 2- Other Music Sessions

We explained that enforcement is both proactive and reactive. We react to comments or complaints made about establishments and from time to time, visit other premises unannounced. However, random visits to check unlicensed premises are a relatively low priority for staff and it is, of course, possible that some entertainment is taking place without a PEL being in place. The responsibility for complying with the law is the licensee's not the entertainer's or the council's.

Your paragraph 3-Human Rights Act

We have responded to you on this matter previously. As you know, the human rights act does not override other legislation, but clearly is a material consideration. Our view remains that your human rights have not been infringed-and there is pretty clear evidence of this by the fact that you continue to operate at the Cove House Inn most Thursdays. As you say, ultimately only the courts can determine whether, in law any rights have been infringed. If you think they have, it is for you to seek your own legal advice and consider the options put to you by that legal advisor.

Your paragraph 4-Morris Dancing

As you know, Morris dancing has never been an issue that we have been asked to investigate. I have no intention of responding to hypothetical situations. If you would like to set out the circumstances in which any event, or series of events, such as Morris Dancing, are actually being undertaken, we will investigate further, and advise the people hosting the event whether a PEL is necessary. Of course, if Morris Dancing is taking place at the Cove House Inn, this would not be an issue, since the Cove House Inn has a PEL.

You also raised further matters in your telephone conversations. You specifically raised with me the nature of 'enforcement' action undertaken by my staff. There is clearly an obligation for specific procedures to be followed if enforcement action is to be taken. No enforcement action has been taken in relation to the Cove House Inn – informal observations were made and advice provided to the landlord on the basis of those observations. I remain satisfied that the Council's staff have behaved in accordance with the requirements of the law and good practice throughout the past nine months. If you continue to believe otherwise, I think you should take your complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman.

Subsequently, you suggested to my Secretary that incorrect advice had been given in a letter sent from this council. In fact, the reply given in an e-mail confirmed that as of 10th September, the Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence. The local Government (Miscellaneous provisions) Act 1982 covers this provision and the reply is correct.

In concluding. I need to make a further remark. I do not believe, nor can I accept, that the campaign in various publications and websites that you helped launch, is at all helpful to Weymouth and Portland in general, or more specifically, the music and performing arts scene in Weymouth and Portland. At times it has been outrageously irresponsible – e.g. suggestions such as Morris Dancing being banned. The fact that you neither like the present law nor accept the interpretation of every Licensing Authority in the country (including Weymouth and Portland) does not excuse such an approach. The bigger prize remains a change in the law to overcome any difficulties and anomalies you can identfy. It is for this reason the Council is interested in hearing if and how the present legislation is impacting on musicians. A report will be made to the social and community committee of the Council, outlining the evidence and views we gather and it will then be up to Councillors to decide whether they wish to lobby for a change in the law. If you or your colleagues have such evidence, I would be interested in receiving it.

Yours sincerely


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 26 Sep 01 - 05:40 PM

Subsequently, you suggested to my Secretary that incorrect advice had been given in a letter sent from this council. In fact, the reply given in an e-mail confirmed that as of 10th September, the Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence. The local Government (Miscellaneous provisions) Act 1982 covers this provision and the reply is correct.

I asked the licensee tonight to produce this document and he could not...................???


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 09:45 AM

Still no response to my email either - looks like the council are using the keep quiet or try to 'baffle 'em with Bulls$%t' tactic!

Good luck

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GUEST,Peter Jones
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 09:52 AM

I'm afraid I have to agree with Mr Grainger

I do not believe, nor can I accept, that the campaign in various publications and websites that you helped launch, is at all helpful to Weymouth and Portland in general, or more specifically, the music and performing arts scene in Weymouth and Portland. At times it has been outrageously irresponsible – e.g. suggestions such as Morris Dancing being banned.

Sorry, but I think you're going way over the top with your cause.

Chill out a bit.

Just my opinion.

Peter


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 10:31 AM

If you fear that the the truth, being discussed in public can hurt your case, you have no case.

It is only being discussed in public, by the council because of the interest, genuine concern and postive action shown by Mudcatters and many others.

The case IS the public's right of freedom of expression.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GUEST,puzzled
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 01:37 PM

Peter Jones do you play in UK sessions? If your landlord was fined for allowing you to play music in his pub would you tell him to Chill out a bit?
Just my opinion but if you are in the UK you should be proud of the music you play and not allow it to be hidden away without publicity like it is something to be ashamed of


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 03:01 PM

Press Coverage continues.

The Stage gave it a bit more publicity this week.

Click Here for all coverage. Hit the Stage link

BTW We seem a bit shy in the Doreset Echo of late.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 28 Sep 01 - 02:43 PM

The local paper does not appear to wish to print any more letters on the subject. I have been sending one in but it does not appear?

You may have more luck?

letters@dorsetecho.co.uk


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 03 Oct 01 - 01:38 PM

We will be having the TV cameras tomorrow. So if you wish to appear on TV, now is your chance and if you don't, you have been warned.

They will be interviewing the council first. Who will no dount be saying that the session can take place as the Cove has a PEL, even though it can't be produced.

The idea is that they will then interview us and film the session in progress. It would be nice to have a good turn out of the 'usual suspects' plus a few newer faces. The more the merrier.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Oct 01 - 03:43 AM

The full details of how to see this coverage, (if indeed you are able to, can be found by clicking here UK TV Cove Session/The Shambles.

Show of Hands at the Royal Albert Hall, it was not.......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 06 Oct 01 - 04:03 AM

Please explain Shambles
I seem to get lost in a clicky loop......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Oct 01 - 06:30 AM

The 'click loop' was from the other thred to this one?

I think it is fixed now? Sorry for losing you Roger.

I will ecplain: The word, Shambles = 'click loop'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Oct 01 - 07:06 AM

01/10/01

Dear Mr Grainger

Re your letter 25/09/01. We have made a little progress, which I shall detail later. Rather than respond in one letter, I propose to take it one step at a time.

The fact that you use other licensing authorities for your defence and support, demonstrates at least that every one of these authorities can and do develop their own public entertainment licensing policy.

Will you write and confirm that the Council could hold a different interpretation of the now endorsed local policy (that considers members of the public are performers), if the Council members decided to do so?

04/10/01

Dear Mr Gall

I acknowledge receipt of your letter of 1st October 2001.

As I said in my last letter, I do not propose to keep corresponding on the matter of interpretation of the law. You know from my earlier correspondence that I believe our (and other council's) approach is a reflection of the law as it stands, and is not a policy decision.

Yours sincerely

Tom Grainger
Chief Executive.

Can anyone explain this reply?

My question was not on interpretation of the law, but one of basic local democracy. Is he saying that the elected members could not decide the council would hold a different interpretation of the word performer?

There is no case law determinative of the word performer.

The (elected) Chairman of the Committee is of a different view and is under the impression that the committee could decide which interpretation they wished. They would be guided by the employees advice but did not have to accept it………..Watch this space.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Oct 01 - 04:32 PM

Dear Mr Grainger

This from one of my lawyer contacts: Under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. 'If the application to renew the PEL was lodged prior to the expiry date of the 30th June, the previous licence continues in force until there has been a determination of the application to renew by the Council.'

On the 26/09/01, in front of witnesses, I requested as a member of the public, to see the valid PEL, that both Mr Locke 10/09/01and Mr Grainger 25/09/01, both have stated the Cove House Inn has.

The licensee was unable to do this. The licence he did have was issued on 16/05/01and valid until 30th June next.

The licensee noticed in July that the PEL had expired and contacted Sue Allen the Licensing Manager. A new application was made, the public notice appearing in the Dorset Evening Echo 08/08/01. The PEL public hearing to decide this new application has yet to be set up.

The following extracts are from a letter to Mr Locke, which the writer has given me full permission to use. Mr Polshaw asks if I will to endeavour to obtain a full reply for him from Mr Locke. Mr Locke's comments to Mr Polshaw are copied from his letter 10/09/01 and are in italics.

"1. The Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence granted by the Council and can hold folk sessions without difficulty."

"3. The issues as to public safety and nuisance suffered by neighbours apply whatever the source of music. We have currently an application from the Cove House Inn to extend hours for music outside and we have 4 or 5 objections from neighbours. They have a legitimate point of view too."

At the moment you know the nature of the complaints you refer to. I understand that this will soon be public knowledge. Could you please confirm that you have four or five comments on the application all with "a legitimate point of view" but could you please confirm that these are to an application for a Public Entertainment Licence and that all of these are objections to this application, as you stated?

I have subsequently been informed that that you are responsible for public licensing matters. is there any reason that you did not correct my assumption that you were not?

"4. Any affect on tourism is not being caused by actions of the Council which have been legally and reasonably correct but by misinformation as to what the real situation is."

Given the "misinformation" that you have supplied in your reply to me, I will make no further comment other than to question whether you are in fact aware of what "the real situation is", or if you are aware, you do not appear to wish to inform others exactly what "the real situation is".

I look forward to your response. Yours sincerely Dave Polshaw

The following is reference to the above from a letter to me from Mr Grainger 25/09/01.

"In fact, the reply given in an e-mail confirmed that as of 10th September, the Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence. The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 182 covers this provision and the reply is correct."

I would be grateful if you could provide a full and satisfactory explanation, under the statues you refer to, as to how you can defend the above statements as being correct?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 Oct 01 - 01:25 PM

Keep up the good work, Roger. The outcome of this is important for the future of ALL folk clubs in the UK. Perhaps we can get these stupid laws repeled once and for all.

I never did hear any more from Mr Locke BTW.

Cheers

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Oct 01 - 01:29 PM

Thank you Dave.

As you can see from the letter above, I am trying to obtain a reply for you from Mr Locke. I take this particular issue personally as I have only supplied, to the very best of my knowledge the clear and supportable facts to my Mudcat friends.

To have these facts questioned, with the implication that I have misinformed anyone is a serious issue. Especially in a communication in which unsupported misinformation is supplied by the council employees.

The same thing happened with the TV crew. They were told that afternoon by the council's PR man that the PEL was valid. The crew tended to believe this, as these council employees are given respect by us.

They tended to believe this despite the fact that the licensee could not produce a valid PEL and I explained that legally the old PEL would only be valid if the new application was made before the expiry date. As it was made a full month after this expiry date so the old PEL cannot be valid.

Mr Grainger (above) has claimed that the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 supports their statement that the Cove House Inn had a valid PEL as of 10th September.......He now has to demonstrate this.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 10 Oct 01 - 05:34 PM

One of the councillors yesterday asked me why we needed to play in the pub? I replied, why not..........Which seemed to be an acceptable answer. But thinking further I realised that it was the other way around.

For in the past sing-alongs, folk and music hall songs among customers would have taken place in public bars. Conventional public entertainment and dances would take place in separate function rooms and usually be charged admission. Certainly my first experiences of live music were in halls and back rooms of pubs.

It is only fairly recently, 70s and on, that conventional entertainment started to take place in the main body of the pub. Later cafe's and wine bars. Certainly outside London and the big cities.

It is this movement of conventional entertainment from function rooms into the bars that has confused the issue. Non musicians now think it unusual for there to be unpaid music made by customers in pubs, where it has in fact been perfectly normal in village pubs and bars for many years.

In fact conventional (paid) entertainment in bars, is the newer and more unusual development.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Oct 01 - 05:45 AM

Given all the problems presented to sessions and gigs by law and council authorities in England, The following is incredibly the way things are in Scotland....

(source: Donald McLeod, Licensing Solicitor, Aberdeen council):
The Licensing (Scotland) Act 1976 is mainly concerned with selling of liquor. If you've got a liquor licence you DON'T need a separate public entertainment licence for live music, unless the music is going to go on after drinking-up time. Renewing a Liquor Licence for a pub is only about £80 once every three years. Police, fire, building control, and environmental health departments are consulted on renewal.

In Aberdeen alone there are about 300 public houses, hotels and restaurants. A band could walk into any of these premises and play without any problem. The number of musicians is not an issue. The licensee does not have to do anything - he is not committing any offence, nor does he have to pay anything to the local authority.

Venues like nightclubs or theatres these are more closely regulated, usually requiring a Civic Public Entertainment Licence (Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982) which imposes additional public safety conditions.

The above was obtained by Hamish' Birchall, whose comments follow......

So here we have neighbouring EC jurisdictions one of which effectively limits musicians' employment to 5% of 111,000 potential venues, while in the other there is no such restriction. The difference could not be more stark. Note also the complete lack of any financial penalty for the provision of live music in these premises in Scotland.

I am quite sure that this extraordinary difference has legal implications. Scotland's live music laws are rational, and the country is actively implementing Article 27.1 of the Universal Declaration; but the equivalent law and enforcement in England/Wales is irrational (prevents live music where there are no noise or safety concerns), and actively opposes Article 27. The difference dates from about 1982 (there was a radical overhaul in Scottish licensing in 1976, but the full effects did not come into force until '82).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Oct 01 - 05:59 AM

The latest from Mr Locke and the 'council's legal position'.
8th October 2001

THE COVE HOUSE INN, PORTLAND

The Chief Executive has asked me to respond to your e-mail dated 13th September 2001. At the same time I am taking this opportunity to restate the Authority's legal position as regards the requirement to hold a Licence to provide public entertainment as it applies to folk music sessions at the Cove House Inn, Portland.

Licensing of Public Entertainment

As you know the general rule that public entertainment cannot be provided without a Licence is contained in Schedule 1 Paragraph 1 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982.

For the purposes of the Act the term entertainment applies to 'public dancing or music or any other public entertainment of a like kind'

The Exemptions

The Act contains a number of exemptions which have no application to folk music sessions. More relevant however are the exemptions contained in Section 182 of the Licensing Act 1964 for public entertainment by way of music and singing only which is provided … 'by not more than two performers …'. The Licensing Act does not offer a definition of performer.

Folk musicians at the Cove House Inn have not claimed the Section 182 exemption since they acknowledge that more than two musicians have been involved in the music sessions in question.

It appears to me that the logical conclusion of your argument that folk musicians involved in jam sessions are not 'performers' is that the Section 182 exemption available for "not more than two performers" has no application to their music making which leaves us with the general rule that a Public Entertainment Licence is required.

Case Law

The legal principles that (I) a licence is required for public entertainment provided not only by paid performers but by individuals for their own amusement and (ii) that whether or not a charge is made for admission is immaterial were established in Clarke –v- Searle and Gregory –v- Tuffs (Tuss), respectively. Although both decisions considered statute which predates current legislation and on the facts dealt with public dancing I consider that they are of general application to public entertainment law, not just public dancing, and that they offer useful guidance for the folk music sessions in question.

The legal section has considered the case of Brearley –v- Morley to which, as I recall, you also made reference in your presentation to the Council's Social/Community Committee. The facts of this particular case were that a man was playing the piano in a public room in licensed premises as accompaniment for another man singing a song. A number of other men were sat around talking and listening. All were customers and received no remuneration for the entertainment. In this appeal case the Court found that the Licensee had not kept or used the room for public entertainment since piano playing or singing by customers was "for the purpose of solacing themselves with music".
Clarke –v- Searle does not appear to have been cited in the case which is unfortunate since the two decisions appear to conflict. Under current legislation on the same facts the S182 exemption would be available. Although I have not referred to Hansard it might be that the exemption was introduced under the Licensing Act with just such a situation of very small-scale music making in mind. The advice of the Licensing Section is that this 1899 case, although again useful guidance, is not of itself justification for changing our decision on the requirement to hold a Licence, a decision which has been reached weighing up a number of factors missing from this particular case.

The Council's Position

Where it comes to the attention of the Council that public entertainment is being provided without the benefit of a Public Entertainment Licence on anything more than a one off, accidental basis the Council will intervene to explain and if necessary to enforce licensing legislation. Having made extensive enquiries we have not identified any other Authority whose position differs from our own. In the context of activities at the Cove House Inn I consider that the action taken by this authority has been lawful, justified and proportionate. In the absence of a fresh judicial decision or a change in primary legislation this sets the Council's legal position on the point. I must make clear that I am unable to enter into any further discussion on the legal arguments and questions as to the Licence itself must now be a matter between the Council and the Licensee.

I would however be pleased to hear further from you with any evidence you have concerning the impact of the legislation on live music in the Borough so that any representations which may be appropriate can be made to the Local Government Association inviting modernisation of licensing laws.

Ian Locke
Director of Tourism and Corporate Services


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Oct 01 - 05:32 AM

It would be useful to receive a legal view of the above?

Click here for a transcript of the local TV News feature.

This will serve as a good introduction to this sorry and complicated tale.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: pavane
Date: 21 Oct 01 - 05:44 PM

Over-zealous officials have been responsible for wiping out much of English tradition in the past. Sad that they can't see it at the time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Oct 01 - 07:07 PM

One of the councillors yesterday asked me why we needed to play in the pub You could have pointed out that it appears to be technically illegal for even one person to play in any other public place.

Mr Locke's suggestion appears to be that a pubic performance does not require that there be any performers at all. This seems to offer some very interesting possibilities. Presumably, if a bunch of people stand around and look at an empty chair, this would count as a public performance for which a Public Entertainment Licence is required.

It occurs to me that Council Meetings - which are sometimes quite entertaining - are in a real sense public entertainments. The public is after all invited and permitted to attend them. I very much doubt if Public Entertainment Licences have been obtained for them. The same applies to Magistrates Courts and Crown Courts. I cannot see how there is any exemption granted for these functions undr law.

I suppose they could seek to claim that these are not "of a like kind" to dancing or music, but that seems very dubious - surely the essential feature which "like" refer to is that some people might find them entertaining. Thus, for example, I unbderstand that entertainments even without music, such as theatrical performances, are in practice expected to have PELs under this legislation.

I feel something should be done about the blatant breaches of the law on the part of people who organise and take part in these civic and legal entertainments. Is there scope for a Citizens Arrest, or a private legal action?

I remember Mudcatter Richard Bridges posted that he had been given permission to post a learned article by someone called Suzanne (something), which might throw light on these issues. Did he ever post it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 22 Oct 01 - 11:50 AM

Heh Heh Heh

I have never done a pubic performance McGrath but the thought of it made me laugh !!!
I was going to try a tune called IRON LEGS for the first time at the pub tonight, maybe I will try that pubic style - now to bow or pluck?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Oct 01 - 04:31 PM

That'll teach me to trust the bloody spellchecker. Lots of rude words it treats as mispellings, which means they don't slip by unnoticed. (Try it.) But it doesn't see "pubic" as rude enough apparently.

Our local Childminders' Association once organised what it advertised as a "Fundraising Pubic Display". And they didn't even have a Public Entertainmnet Licence. Or a Pubic Entertainment Licence.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Oct 01 - 06:03 PM

The following from the Chief Executive of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council.

Dear Mr Gall

I am replying to your email of 10th Oct. I am sorry for not responding earlier. The delay is a result of a combination of factors.

I asked my legal advisor to provide a clear statement on the position of the Cove House Inn, given the facts that you set out in your email. I can confirm that Mr Polshaw's interpretation is correct and that technically the PEL, for the Cove House Inn expired. Clearly therefore the phrase 'a valid PEL is held' is not correct. I apologise if you were misled on this matter of law.

I do have to say however that our view remains that it is a technicality, which has no impact on the ability of the Cove House Inn to carry on providing the type of entertainment permitted by the 'old' PEL, pending consideration of the new application.

Tom Grainger


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Oct 01 - 06:09 PM

04/10/01

Dear Mr Gall

I acknowledge receipt of your letter of 1st October 2001.

As I said in my last letter, I do not propose to keep corresponding on the matter of interpretation of the law.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Oct 01 - 06:26 PM

"In fact, the reply given in an e-mail confirmed that as of 10th September, the Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence. The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 182 covers this provision and the reply is correct."

If I was misled on this matter of law????


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 24 Oct 01 - 07:13 PM

JOBSWORTHS ???

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 28 Oct 01 - 08:07 PM

Mr Locke has prepared a report for a meeting on 30 Oct. Hopefully we can get the whole thing linked.

Until then, this is a taste of what he says to the members about your mistaken efforts.

As many Members are no doubt already aware, the Council has received correspondence and e-mails on the subject of public entertainment licensing and the Cove House Inn for many months now. The vast majority of these have been from persons outside Weymouth and many from outside the UK who were under the mistaken impression that folk music and Morris Dancing had been banned from The Cove House Inn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 02:38 AM

As a condition of the condition placed on the Cove's PEL, when issued on 16/05/01.

Music and dancing outside the pub could only take place once a year.

Sessions could not take place at all without the PEL.

Who is mistaken? And who is misinforming?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 02:47 AM

11th Sept

Would anyone care to refute any of Mr Lockes comments? If the Cove can have music sessions whenever they want what exactly is the issue? If it is neighbours rasing objections to extending the sessions outside don't they, as Mr Locke points out, have 'a legitimate point of view too'?

Not siding with the council at all but is there some 'mis-information' here? Can someone put the record straight?

Dave the Gnome

As you can see the council's misinformation tends to be effective. Dave responded (see above) and again.

Dear Mr Locke

Would you please respond to my letter, sent on September the 14th and detailed below so I can be up to data on the current views of the council.

Many thanks in advance.

Have you received a reply yet Dave?

HELP!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 05:42 PM

This is the background.

When the current licensees took over the Cove, my wife and I performed there as conventional paid public entertainment. As a result the Friday night became a regular night for this.

As long as the two-performer aspect was kept to, a Public Entertainment Licence was not required as the Section 182 exemption (the so-called two-in a bar rule) applied.

Another pub has held a regular sing-around for about 5 years now, without a Public Entertainment Licence. This is not a conventional public entertainment. The musicians are unpaid customers just making traditional song for their own entertainment, with the permission of the licensee.

The licensee of The Cove had visited this sing-around with me and would have liked to have a similar thing in their pub but did not want to take away any customers from this establishment.

This original session became busy and there was a conflict between songs and tunes. We thought that a session on another night of the week, for tunes only would solve a number of problems. We needed to advertise that it was for tunes only.

In our naivety we did not dream that the licensing authority would class customers providing their own traditional music, as performers for the sole purpose of preventing it.

I advertised for participants for the first night 07/12/00, in our local paper, the licensing manager saw this, wrongly assumed that the licensee had place it and was staging a public entertainment.

The premises were visited the next day 08/12/00 and the licensee was threatened, even though at this point, the event had not been witnessed to ascertain how many musicians were involved.

When it was witnessed they saw what they wanted to see, a public entertainment with more than two performers. They did not bother to speak to any of the musicians. A letter was issued warning that the licensee faced a possible £20,000 fine or a six month prison sentence if it continued.

When I heard of this action I stopped the single advert in the local paper. I contacted the licensing dept and explained. It would be fair to say that they did not really consider it to be any of my business but a matter only between them and the licensee.

Despite the council's other obligations, all they appeared to be concerned about was that it was unfair on the pubs that had PELs. The original event has not received any attention from our officials and continues.

Events of this nature usually stop at this point, the licensee being unwilling to pay for the cost of a PEL. The session struggled on as a private party, attempting to exclude the public as in this case the licensee did apply for a PEL on 01/02/01.

The PEL was eventually granted on 16/05/01 but with conditions that were not decided by councillors, in the public hearing scheduled for this on 09/05/01. This hearing being cancelled at the very last moment, by the officers, and the conditions applied in private.

These conditions preventing any outside entertainment from taking place except once every August. I have established that this includes Morris dancing on land belonging to the premises. Far from enabling it the PEL has resulted in this traditional activity at the pub being prevented and made the public less safe.

I did not feel that the elected members and the public would be happy with this and requested that the policy and the future of traditional music locally, be decided by a meeting of the elected members.

Eventually on 05/06/01 a meeting of the Social and Community Committee were recommended to "confirm that steps taken by Licensing Officers to encourage an application from the proprietor of The Cove House Inn., Portland for a licence permitting public entertainment on the premises were appropriate and justified".

The officers presented 'advice' for this meeting, that really gave the members no other choice but to confirm this. They state: "By applying the relevant licensing legislation the council has imposed conditions and restrictions on Mr Gall's rights (of freedom of expression), that are legal, necessary and proportionate in the interests of public safety, control of nuisance and the prevention of crime and disorder.

They admit that no public complaint was ever received about the session and no additional safety, noise, or crime measures were required to enable the granting of the PEL.

In other words everyone was just as safe before this action as they were with a PEL and there were clearly never any grounds for preventing, from 08/12/00 to 16/0501, the right of freedom of expression contained in Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights?


Paid for and issued on 16/05/01 the application for renewal needed to be made and paid for again on 02/06/0 as the PEL was valid only until 30/06/01. As all they all are, apparently.

An application for renewal and revision was made, even though there was nothing to renew and the public notice appeared in the local paper on 08/08/01.

The officers have stated that the PEL was valid as of 10/09/01. Ignoring their own rules and the law, deciding to do and say exactly what they want as usual. The members appear to accept this.

Mr Grainger stating on 24/10/01: Clearly therefore the phrase' a valid PEL is held' is not correct. I apologise if you were misled on this matter of law. I do have to say however that our view remains that it is a technicality, which has no impact on the ability of the Cove House Inn to carry on providing the type of entertainment permitted by the 'old PEL, pending consideration of the new application.

Since the officer's first visit 08/12/00 to date, The licensee has paid for two PELs and the Cove House Inn has only had a valid PEL for six weeks!

From 08/12/00 to 16/05/01: The officers maintain that premises were unsafe for 'entertainment', without a PEL, under the law.

From 16/05/01 to 30/06/01
: The premises were considered safe although no additional safety measures were introduced to enable the PEL to be issued. This was to expire 30/06/01.

From 30/06/01 to date. The premises were unsafe for 'entertainment', without a PEL, under the law. The officers now choose to ignore the very law that they claim made their actions "legal, necessary and proportionate in the interests of public safety, control of nuisance and the prevention of crime"

.

Where the provisions apply it is a requirement to have a licence and not something on which we have any discretion. Mr Locke in his letter to Ian Bruce MP 22/03/01

The officers claimed the council would be challenged for not enforcing this law.

The local paper for 25/10/01, clearly states a trio will be performing at the Cove House Inn. The officer's will no doubt ignore this advert, Mr Locke's view considered more important than the law?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 03:51 PM

I attended the council meeting today....I sat for three hours listening to items on public toilets and tennis clubs, as our was the last item.

I had provided for each member written info(to counter Mr Lockes rather selective 'background'), that the Chairman had told me at the beginning of the meeting would be distributed in a recess before our item.

Then Mr Grainger appeared halfway through and whispered into the Chairman's ear and then the members were not going to be provided with this and the item was left to be discussed at the next meeting in January..........!

Most of the members had gone home by then anyway. I insisted on having my three minutes and then I came home.

So much for local democracy.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 04:14 PM

Are there any possible allies among councillors or council officers? Generally speaking, as with all organisations, there are all kinds of rivalries and feuds and divisions, that by no means coincide with political lines.

There should be someone who could see this issue as a way of weakening or discrediting someone they dislike, and as a useful weapon.

This isn't the most edifying view of dealing with local democracy, but as with Loch Lomond, sometimes taking the low road is a quicker way home.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 30 Oct 01 - 04:33 PM

Mr Grainger and Mr Locke simply will not allow the councillors to decide anything and the councillors seem to think this is fine.

I will let you know if I find anyone prepared to do anything at all, for any motive.

If you were a councillor would you have accepted the above?

They are aware that the officers have misinformed Dave the Gnome and that the council is now being advised that illegal activities are OK.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 31 Oct 01 - 05:36 PM

I did have my three minutes of fame and this is what I said.

The customer's musical activities, unpaid and for their own enjoyment, at The Cove House Inn, the activities that started this whole affair locally. Never asked for, or ever required a change of law to enable them.

It is the risk presented to such valuable community activities that I wish the members to address.

This activity only required a PEL, on the evidence of one officer, that this was a public entertainment and the customers were performers.

When faced with prosecution, if the licensee had not then applied for a PEL, this activity would have been lost. This is the risk. I refer to.

For five years or so, and to date. An identical activity takes place in another pub locally, free of any enforcement action.

My wish is that this activity can continue, free of the risk presented by any future enforcement action.

For then, if this licensee does not apply for a PEL? This activity will be lost.

Could the members please establish, if as the Licensing Authority, they could remove this risk NOW?

Members have not been presented with the Government's view that: "Whether members of the public who sing on licensed premises count as performers is a matter for the licensing authority to decide, depending on the circumstances.". The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Lord Bassam of Brighton, replying to the specific question in The House of Lords 11 December 2000.

Do the members really want the council to hold their current position, that members of the public, if they regularly sing, are performers in a public entertainment?

Have the officers ever claimed or demonstrated to the members that this is the best policy for this Borough?

Are the members prepared to defend this publicly, as the best policy for this Borough?

This committee has endorsed this policy under the impression that the law makes them do this.

Clearly performers are paid or obligated to perform to an audience. That is a public entertainment.

Surely this sensible definition is the best and safest one, for this Borough?

The case law precedent, that 'customers solacing themselves with music' is not public entertainment. B –v- M, has not been presented to the members.

As Mr Locke accepts in the report, this precedent conflicts with the Legal Sections's example from 1793. Why does Mr Locke in his report, then defer to the Licensing Section on this matter of law?

Because of these conflicting legal views, can I request that the members take impartial specialist legal advice?

First to establish if the Committee could, choose to hold the sensible definition of the word performer, if they wished

Second to decide what definition they may then wish to hold, and are prepared to defend , as the best one for the public of this Borough.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Nov 01 - 01:05 PM

I do think that there may be a slight glimmer of light and the end of this long dark tunnel.

It is too soon to be certain or very hopeful, but.................

Watch this space.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 04 Nov 01 - 01:33 PM

Does that mean I don't have to write that Letter to my MP that I have been putting off all week?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 04 Nov 01 - 01:46 PM

Roger in Sheffield - No! - Gareth

And just as a reminders as to what has gone on.

CLICK 'ERE


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 04 Nov 01 - 01:57 PM

Arrrrrhg ! Finger trouble with Blue Clicky

Try CLICK 'ERS

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 04 Nov 01 - 02:05 PM

Even More Arrrrrgh !

CLICK 'ERE

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Nov 01 - 06:19 AM

Does that mean I don't have to write that Letter to my MP that I have been putting off all week?

No. It just means that where there was no light at all here locally, there may just be a little.

The pressure must be kept up nationally, especially from the unpaid session argument i.e. members of the public as performers.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Nov 01 - 05:33 AM

Have you had a reply from Mr Locke yet Dave?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Nov 01 - 09:22 AM

The following is, in their own words the council officer's move in year, from enforcement of the strict letter of the law and claiming to have no discretion to ignoring the law completely.

19/03/01 Mr Locke to Ian Bruce MP: "Where the provisions apply it is a requirement to have a licence and not something on which we have any discretion".

08/02/01 Mrs Earnshaw to Councillor Booth: "The Council as Licensing Authority has a duty to enforce the law as it stands impartially. I can see no justification for failing to encourage the Licensee of the Cove House Inn to apply for a Public Entertainment Licence and, should it become necessary to take enforcement action in the event that unlicensed performances take place on the premises".

05/06/01 Mrs Earnshaw and the Licensing Manager in their report to the Social/Community Committee: "It is a requirement of the Act that Public Entertainment shall not be provided in any place except in accordance with a PEL issued by the Local Authority".

And from the same document: "By applying the relevant licensing legislation the Council has imposed conditions and restrictions on Mr Gall's rights which are legal necessary and proportionate in the interests of public safety, control of nuisance and the prevention of crime and disorder".

 The PEL applied for 01/02/01 was issued on 16/05/01 and expired only 6 weeks later on 30/06/01. The licensee informed the Licensing Manager. Following her advice all the way they paid another fee and made an (incorrect) application for renewal and revision on 26/07/01. As the renewal would have to have been made 28 days before the expiry date, the application should have been for a new grant as there was nothing to renew.

04/09/01From Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, DG Bishop Fire Safety Advisor to Chief Executive (FAO Mrs S Allen. "My inspection of the above premises on 29 August, found that the fire safety conditions were not being maintained as detailed in the Public Entertainment Licence issued on 16 May 2001

".

06/09/01 Peter Gilmour in The Stage. "If an incident occurred in that pub and they had not got a licence and somebody had died everybody would be hounding me, and rightly so". "At the end of the day our concern is public safety".

06/09/0 From Sue Allen Licensing Manager to Mr and Mrs Flynn. "I write further to your recent application for renewal and variation of the Public Entertainment Licence. The Fire Officer inspected your premises on 29th August 2001 and found that the fire safety conditions were not being maintained as detailed in the conditions of the Public Entertainment Licence issued to you on 16th May 2001."
The items of concern are detailed in the attached schedule and until these defects have been rectified I cannot process your application further. I should there fore be grateful if you would let me know as soon as you have dealt with these matters and I can then arrange for a further inspection to be carried out"


10/09/01From: Ian Locke to D Polshaw. In reply to your email I would make the following points: 1. The Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence granted by the Council and can hold folk sessions without difficulty.

14/09/01 from D Polshaw to Ian Locke. Thank you for your reply. However, having re-checked my sources, I believe that the only mis-information being provided is by you.

I would be grateful if you could address the following points before I contact the press
.

1. The Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence granted by the Council and can hold folk sessions without difficulty.

Is it true that the Cove applied for a PEL on 01/02/01, obtained it only on 16/05/01 and that in July the licensee pointed out to your Licensing Manager that this licence had expired on 30/06/01? If so can you confirm and apologise for the misinformation you have supplied? Would you confirm that as of the date of your communication to me, The Cove House Inn does not have a valid PEL and that given your strict interpretation of the law and the word performer, would be curently illegal there, if more than two people were singing?

25/09/01 from Mr Grainger to Roger Gall l25/09/01. "In fact, the reply given in an e-mail confirmed that as of 10th September, the Cove House Inn has a Public Entertainment Licence. The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 182 covers this provision and the reply is correct."

05/10/01 from Roger Gall to Mr Grainger. I would be grateful if you could provide a full and satisfactory explanation, under the statues you refer to, as to how you can defend the above statements as being correct?

17/10/01 Peter Gilmour speaking on Carlton West Country Live. If an incident did occur an accident and somebody was injured or hurt or killed whatever, you'd be the first people to say to me, you are responsible for enforcing that legislation, why didn't you do it?

24/10/01 From: Tom Grainger. I am replying to your email of 10th Oct. I am sorry for not responding earlier. The delay is a result of a combination of factors I asked my legal advisor to provide a clear statement on the position of the Cove House Inn, given the facts that you set out in your email. I can confirm that Mr Polshaw's interpretation is correct and that technically the PEL for the Cove House Inn expired. Clearly therefore the phrase 'a valid PEL is held' is not correct. I apologise if you were misled on this matter of law.

I do have to say however that our view remains that it is a technicality, which has no impact on the ability of the Cove House Inn to carry on providing the type of entertainment permitted by the 'old' PEL, pending consideration of the new application
.

26/10/01 from D Polshaw to Mr Locke. "Dear Mr Locke. Would you please respond to my letter, sent on September the 14th and detailed below so I can be up to data on the current views of the council. Many thanks in advance." (No reply to Mr Polshaw from Mr Locke has been made to date).

30/10/01 Social/Community Committee meeting item deferred to January 15th.

08/11/01 From Sue Allen to Roger Gall. "I write in response to your e-mail of 31st October 2001. Matters relating to the Licence, as has already been explained, are a matter between a licensee or proposed licensee and the Authority. I will therefore be writing to the licensee to clarify the current status of the Licence".

08/11/01 from Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, A Nain Sub Officer to Chief Executive (Attn Mrs S Allen). "Resulting from my further inspection of the above premises, the items contained in the schedule of recommendations dated 04 September 2001, have now been satisfactorily implemented".

08/11/01 from Sue Allen to Mr and Mrs Flynn. "As your previous licence expired on 30th June 2001 and you did not make application to renew until 26th July 2001 your Licence effectively lapsed. This means that the advertisement placed in the Dorset Echo on 8th August 2001 for variation and renewal was technically incorrect and should in fact have been for grant of licence. However, this Council as Licensing Authority has the discretion as laid down in Paragraph 6(2) of Schedule 1 to the Act, "in such cases as they see fit" to grant an application for an Entertainment Licence notwithstanding that the applicant has failed to give notice as prescribed under the Act. It is my intention to use this discretion provided that the Police and Fire Authority do not object and in these circumstances you will not be required to advertise a further notice of intention".

I also wish to point out that although your Licence has in fact expired the Licensing Authority does not consider that in this case the public interest has been prejudiced provided the Licence is treated as carrying over on the same terms.

15/11/01 from Sue Allen to Roger Gall. "The Council does not believe that the public interest is served in taking enforcement action provided the premises are operating in accordance with the conditions attached to the grant of the original Licence".

18/11/01 from Roger Gall to Sue Allen. "I formally make this request as a member of the public who has written to comment on an incorrect Public Notice for renewal and revision, that the correct Public Notice be placed and that the correct application for a new grant be made in the usual fashion".

19/11/01 Report for the Licensing Hearing proposed for 05/12/01, prepared by Sue Allen. "In the circumstances the Licensing Authority considers that this lapse should be treated as a technical defect only and provided the premises have continued to be operated in accordance the terms of the previous licence there is no public interest in bringing enforcement action".

 Senior officers making the above statements were aware that from 30/06/01 the PEL had expired and also that from 04/09/01 the Fire and Safety conditions of the original PEL were not being followed and that as a result of this the premises were unsafe. A fact that prevented the new application from continuing but did not, in the officer's view prevent these illegal and unsafe activities from continuing without a PEL or have any impact of the public interest. This advice not being referred to the Committee, who form the Licensing Authority.

Also without advice to the Committee, these same officers were earlier prepared to prosecute the licensee for continuing with these activities without a PEL, when the officers claimed at this time they did not have any discretion. Once the 'protection money' (two lots of fees) has been paid, and the officers have made an administrative error, a somewhat different picture of law, discretion, correct procedure, the public interest and safety seems to emerge. One where the public's safety can be knowingly compromised, seemingly in order only to prevent any possible embarrassment to council officers.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 01 Dec 01 - 12:23 PM

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport, has finally explained why it will not provide general information on its website about the prevailing legislation that regulates public music and dancing (www.culture.gov.uk).

'We are extremely reluctant to place general information on our website which may alarm ordinary and honest people unnecessarily when their local authority may adopt a policy of non-enforcement or the practice of waiving requirements in certain circumstances'. [Philippa Drew, Director of Education, Training, Arts and Sport, DCMS, letter to Victoria Todd, Director of the National Campaign for the Arts, dated 5 October 2001]

The 'alarming' information apparently includes the 'two-in-a-bar rule' and the way councils enforce it. When challenged, councils say they have no discretion. Since Ms Drew's letter the DCMS has declined to produce any evidence of local authorities that adopt a 'policy of non-enforcement'.

There is also the enormous category of potential criminals created by public entertainment legislation. This includes not only those who would organise public gigs without first obtaining a PEL, but also 'any other person who, knowing or having reasonable cause to suspect' that a venue was going to be so used and 'allowed the place to be used for the provision of that entertainment... or let the place, or otherwise made it available, to any person' responsible for organising the entertainment without a PEL. Max penalty: £20,000 fine and six months in prison. [Schedule 1, Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982].

In England and Wales only 5% of 111,000 pubs, bars, restaurants and hotels currently hold annual PELs. In Scotland, by contrast, no PEL is required for live bands playing in these premises during permitted hours (i.e before 11pm). If a band plays, the licensee is committing no offence, and no additional fee is payable to the local authority. Exactly the same health and safety legislation applies to Scottish pubs as in England and Wales.

Ms Drew also argues that, based on the number of enquiries received at the DCMS, there is no need for their website to provide any FAQs about PELs because there is little public interest.

This is strange when you consider that this year alone there have been editorials about PELs and 'two-in-a-bar' in The Stage (January 11), Evening Standard (14 June), The Times (19 July), letters in The Times (25 July), features in The Stage (January 11 and post), Sunday Times (21 January), The Times (19 July), Guardian (28 July), Evening Standard (13 June and 20 July), Classical Music (1 September), and television coverage on HTV (January), BBC Weekend Watchdog (1 June), BBC South (4 September), Carlton West Country (17 October), radio news coverage by Radio 4 (PM), Radio Five Live, LBC, Three Counties Radio, Radio 3 (all July 19), and on Courtney Pine's Radio 2 jazz programme (13 August), not to mention continued coverage in local and trade press (Hampstead & Highgate Express, Camden Chronicle, Dorset Echo, Brighton Argus, Western Daily Mail, The Oxford Times, The Publican, Morning Advertiser and others).

If you probe far enough into the DCMS website there is a copy of the licensing White Paper, some 80 pages long. This sets out the Governments proposals for reform. This includes a risk assessment that doing away with the 'two-in-a-bar rule' will actually reduce work opportunities for musicians [p67]. Under the proposals, licensees who want to put on even a solo pianist will have to obtain local authority approval first.

It is unclear how the DCMS expect the general public to understand the proposed reforms without also providing some information explaining the present law.

On 2 May former Home Office Minister Mike O'Brien held a press conference announcing the conclusion of the Government's licensing review. He gave equal weight to liquor and entertainment licensing reform, saying: 'These reforms should give the tourism industry a real boost...' (Home Office press release). The DCMS is now responsible for both public entertainment licensing policy and tourism, but no timetable has been set for the presentation of a new licensing Bill.

If you wish to express a view directly to the DCMS, you could email Licensing Minister Dr Kim Howells: Kim.Howells@culture.gsi.gov.uk

Ms Drew's email address is: Philippa.Drew@culture.gsi.gov.uk

Or write to: DCMS, 2-4 Cockspur St, London SW1Y 5DH.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 01 Dec 01 - 01:39 PM

A couple of months back I sent our Harlow MP Bill Rammell a letter about this, and he sent it upstairs, with a note back to me indicating that he's fed up with the current legal situation himself (well, he used to have to deal personally with negotiating Public Entertainment Licences as part of his job with a university before he became an MP). I think I posted the text of my letter and Bill's reply on the Cat at the time.

Anyway, I've just today had a copy of the letter that he has got back from Dr Kim Howells in the Department of Agriculture and Sport, Minister for Tourism, Film and Broadcasting (a funny combination of responsibilities isn't it?). No surprises in it, but it's got a couple of useful points:

Dear Bill, Thank you for your letter of 19 September to Alan Whitbread enclosing one from Mr Kevin McGrath of (address), which has been passed to me as I am now responsible for policy in respect of public entertainment licensing.

We are equally keen to reform and modernise this country's existing outdated licensing laws. The White Paper "Time for Reform£, published in April 2000 heavily criticised the public entertainment licensing arrangements and the inconsistency in the interpretation and practice adopted by different local authorities.

As Mr McGrath suggests, a key problem is the over-zealous enforcement by a handful of local authorities.

The White Paper proposed a single integrated premises licence covering sales of alcohol, the provision of public entertainment and late-night refreshment or any combination of these activities. Once granted this licence will be valid for the lifetime of the business involved.

This would amount to a massive reduction in bureaucracy. In terms of licensing, many premises would incur no additional cost by obtaining coverage under the licence for all public entertainments as well as the sale of alcohol. Under the present system it is a considerable additional annual cost for any pub of club to decide to obtain a public entertainment licence. The White Paper proposals should therefore create a new incentive for premises to stage professional musical performances or indeed the kind of amateur singalongs to which Mr McGrath also refers.

In May this year the Government publicly announced its intention to introduce primary legislation to implement the White Paper proposals as soon as Parliamentary permits.

Yours, Kim

And from that I find it useful that Kim Howells specifically says - referring directly to my letter in which I gave the example of what has happened in Weymouth, and also in Waltham Abbey - "a key problem is over-zealous enforcement by a handful of local authorities."

And I also see it as useful that Kim Howells has also taken note of the existence of sessions as opposed to gigs, for the first time so far as I am aware in this context - "amateur singalongs" is a pretty dire label, but you can't have everything. Anyway he's Welsh, so perhaps the term is a bit more respectful than it would be if it had come from an English politician.

What he has failed to do of course is to take account of the problem that the present restrictions do not just impact on pubs and so forth, but that if anyone makes music in any place to which the public has access, a licence is required. If this had been the case back in the 50s, the coffee-bar skiffle craze that was the precursor of both the folk club movement ,and of the British rock explosion would have been stifled at birth.

Anyway I'll make this point in my reply to Bill Rammell and to Kim Howells.

Bill Rammell's letter back to me today for the most part just repeats what Kim Howells said verbatim. But he adds a handwritten PS saying "I am convinced that this change needs to happen. I am strongly pressing for it."

So even if Shambles must feel he is beating his brains out on the obdurate and apparently obtuse bureaucrats in Weymouth, there are some reasons to be hopeful. And on the basis of this letter it seems clear that "over-zealous enforcement by a handful of local authorities" is not favourably regarded in high places, and that, on this matter, the burghers of Weymouth are out on a limb that is likely to be lopped off before too long.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 01 Dec 01 - 03:20 PM

The following was produced by Hamish Birchall.

Q: Who needs a public entertainment licence (PEL)?
A: Anyone organising any public performance of live music virtually anywhere. Without first obtaining a PEL from their local authority they could face a criminal prosecution. Venues affected could include village halls, schools, hospitals, libraries and so on.

Q: Does that mean even a piano recital in your own home could be illegal?
A: Yes, if the public were invited to attend.

Q: What is the penalty?
A: Unlicensed live music is a criminal offence. The maximum penalty is a £20,000 fine and six months in prison.

Q: Is amateur performance exempt from the PEL requirement?
A: No. It is immaterial whether or not performers are paid, or whether admission is free or conditional upon payment of an entry fee. The PEL fee may be waived, however, if the event is for a charitable or educational purpose.

Q: When is an entertainment 'public'?

A: Unfortunately the legislation that defines public entertainment does not define the term public. Case law is therefore the only guide. In Gardner v Morris (1961) it was determined that the number of members of the public that were present was irrelevant. The test was whether any 'reputable' member of the public could gain entry! Broadly speaking if a member of the public could gain entry without discrimination, by payment or otherwise, then the event would be public.

Q: Are any exemptions allowed?
A: Yes, performances that are:

part of a religious service;
in a place of public religious worship (outside London); on Crown land;
by up to two 'performers' in on-licensed premises (bars, restaurants etc).

Q: What about private members clubs?

A: It is possible to avoid the necessity of a PEL by setting up a private members club. However this can be complicated, so it would be a good idea to get legal advice. For example, if alcohol is on sale on the club premises formal registration must be made to the magistrates court so that a hearing can consider all aspects of the club formation (a minimum required number of members, rules, committee structure etc). This is not an easy option. If alcohol is not to be sold on the club's premises formal registration is not necessary. However it is advisable to set up the club with membership forms, committee, membership list etc, if only to reassure a local authority that it is properly constituted (in case they threatened action on the basis that a particular event was public). But this is not the end of the story. You need to check whether your local authority has adopted the Private Places of Entertainment Act 1967 – if they have, you would need to obtain a different type of formal licence!

Q: If I were to play a guitar in my local pub, and use backing tapes to get around the two musician rule, is that OK?
A: No. Combining even one live musician with any form of 'recorded sound' is illegal in such premises without a PEL. The term 'recorded sound' would also include minidisc. Even MIDI technology, almost universal in modern electronic instruments, is counted as 'recorded sound' by some local authorities.

Q: How many on-licensed premises have PELs?

A: There are about 111,000 on-licensed premises in England and Wales, including all pubs. Only 5% actually hold annual PELs.

Q: Do members of the public count as 'performers' if they participate by singing along during a performance in these premises?
A: Yes, many local authorities interpret the law in this way. They cite case law precedent from 1793 (Clarke v Searle) to support this position.

Q: Does that mean more than two people singing could be a criminal offence in over 100,000 pubs, bars and restaurants?
A: For the licensee - yes, particularly if it was advertised as a regular activity.

Q: What if I engaged one musician and invited different singers to 'do a turn'. Provided only two were performing at any one time, would that be OK?

A: Not according to London borough councils. They argue that only the same two performers should be allowed throughout the course of an entertainment in on-licensed premises. However, a recent case (London Borough of Southwark v Sean Toye, Inner London Crown Court, 9 April 2001) came down against that strict reading of the 'two-in-a-bar rule'. Southwark has subsequently changed its enforcement policy so as to allow more than a total of two performers, provided only two perform at any one time. Westminster, Islington and Camden, however, have indicated that they will not change their 'no more than the same two performers' interpretation. This particular issue was only one element of the case, the other being the question whether MIDI constitutes 'recorded sound' for the purposes of the law. Southwark argued that it does, thereby requiring a PEL if a live singer performs along with it (no combination of live and 'recorded sound' being allowed under s 182.1 of the Licensing Act 1964 - without a PEL). Southwark won that argument, and Mr Toye has appealed. The appeal will now go to the Divisional Court as a 'case stated' - no date has yet been fixed. This appeal may also lead to a review of Inner London Crown Court's decision about 'no more than two performers in total'. Interestingly, Mr Toye's defence is funded by the manufacturer of the karaoke equipment that uses MIDI technology.

Q: Does a pub need a PEL for any form of recorded sound or satellite television?
A: No - provided no live musicians play at the same time.

Q: What the rationale for PELs?
A: To ensure public safety, minimise public disturbance and the potential for crime and disorder - reasonable enough, on the face of it. Regulation is certainly necessary for events that might become dangerously overcrowded, noisy or boisterous. But for premises that already count as 'workplaces', like bars, restaurants and hotels, PELs duplicate existing public safety provision under separate legislation. In Scotland, for example, where exactly the same health and safety legislation applies to workplaces as in England, no PEL is required for live music in pubs during permitted hours. Across the UK external noise is also separately regulated, whether it emanates from a neighbour's hi-fi, a pub or a factory [Environmental Protection Act 1990, Noise and Statutory Nuisance Act 1993, Noise Act 1996, Town and Country Planning Acts can impose noise conditions on premises]. Public order outside premises is the responsibility of the police, and, under the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001, new provisions will enable the police or a local authority to apply for a court order to close licensed premises in the interests of public safety and to prevent disturbance arising from excessive noise.

Q: What is the Government doing to reform PELs?

A: It has proposed radical reform of both liquor and public entertainment licensing, and accepts that there is duplication of existing legislative provision for public safety etc. A White Paper (Time for Reform: Proposals for the Modernisation of our Licensing Laws) was published in April 2000. It proposed to end public entertainment licensing as a separate licensing regime. All venues which serve or sell alcohol or provide any entertainment to the public would be required to obtain a 'premises licence'.

The local council will become the licensing authority, and would decide the conditions to be imposed on those activities and on the premises itself, including the opening hours. Local residents and interest groups, such as musicians/promoters, will - in theory - also have a say. Recent comments from the DCMS suggest that local authorities 'would be obliged to consider favourably' plans for entertainment activities. Conditions imposed would be based solely on 'disorder, safety or nuisance factors'. Future licence fees will be centrally set in banded levels, but there will still be scope for local variation. There is, predictably, much debate about the precise fee levels, and the formulae that will be used to calculate them. The White Paper proposed fees that would be considerably lower than many currently set by local authorities. But the Local Government Association is lobbying vigorously to retain the local, discretionary fee structure and for higher fees than those proposed in the White Paper. It is worth noting that in Scotland, licensees do not have to pay anything above the cost of a liquor licence to provide entertainment, whether live or recorded (although noise conditions will be imposed on entertainment beyond permitted hours).

Behind the scenes debate will continue until the Government publishes a new licensing Bill, at which time a Regulatory Impact Assessment concerning licence fees will also be made available to Parliament. The entertainment industry's level of concern about inconsistency in local authority PEL fees led to the publication last year (at the same time as the White Paper) of Home Office Circular 13/2000. This was a formal warning to local authorities that overcharging for PELs could be 'ultra vires', and a warning not to impose, in its words, 'excessive' conditions. It appears, however, that local authorities have taken little notice of the Circular. Most London borough councils, for example, have since increased their PEL fees in line with inflation. Both the licensing White Paper and the Circular are available on the DCMS website: www.culture.gov.uk.

Q: When will new licensing legislation be introduced?

A: A new licensing Bill was promised just before the General Election, but it was dropped from the Queen's Speech. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport, responsible for licensing since 8 June this year, is now saying that legislation will be introduced 'as soon as Parliamentary time permits'. In the meantime it has suggested that it may consider issuing further guidelines to local authorities


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 03 Dec 01 - 01:56 PM

Trevor Gilson has written an excellent article on the subjct Click Here


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 04:00 PM

Shambles & Co

It was announced in the House of Commons yesterday that the Government plans to change the law in the 2002-2003 Parliamentary session.

The Hansard website address is

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm/cmhansrd.htm

But here's the report. I've also had an e-mail from Sheila Miller, who is on the warpath because of the crack about Somerset folk singers...

Kitty

Music (Licensed Premises) 11. Mr. Kelvin Hopkins (Luton, North): When she will introduce legislation to abolish the restrictions on the numbers of musicians permitted to play together in licensed premises. [16995] The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (Dr. Kim Howells): We intend to present a Bill to reform and modernise the alcohol and public entertainment licensing laws as soon as parliamentary time permits. However, there is no current restriction on the number of musicians who may play together in licensed premises if the licensee has first obtained an appropriate public entertainment licence. I am aware that obtaining such licences can be a prohibitively expensive business in some local authority areas, because of the attitude of those authorities. Mr. Hopkins: Many thousands of part-time and professional musicians who wish to play and entertain in pubs and restaurants, and millions who wish to listen to them, find that that is not possible because of the current restriction--the two-in-a-bar rule. Is it not nonsensical that a quiet jazz piano trio or a string quartet may not play in such premises, while a loud karaoke machine or discotheque may operate in them? Dr. Howells: I entirely agree. We want to make licensing a much simpler, less bureaucratic and cheaper process, so that there is no deterrent to seeking the appropriate licences. It is obvious that the legislation badly needs to be updated: it dates back to the mid-1960s, when I suppose an acoustic-guitar folk trio made a good deal less noise than one person with a loud amplifier. Mr. Crispin Blunt (Reigate): If the legislation needs updating so badly, and given that legislation modernising licensing laws was promised to the electorate in the Labour party manifesto, why did that proposed legislation not appear in the Queen's Speech? Dr. Howells: Because this Government were elected to improve public services. Those were the Government's priorities, as we made very clear, and they are the priorities that we have stuck to in our legislative programme. We hope very much that there will be space for a Bill allowing us to make these reforms, and that it will be announced in the next Queen's Speech. Mr. Tony Banks (West Ham): Are we not living in a much nicer world when we can listen to music rather than having to face the music, as we have to here from time to time? 3 Dec 2001 : Column 12 Will my hon. Friend look again at the restrictions on buskers on the underground and at British Rail stations? They add to the enjoyment and gaiety of life, but so often they are moved on. Can we not view the situation in a proper way, so that the buskers can earn their living and we can all enjoy their performances? Dr. Howells: I do not believe that that would be part of a reform of licensing Bill, but it is an interesting thought. Some extremely dreary public places are enlivened by the activities of buskers. Mr. David Heath (Somerton and Frome): Is it not ridiculous that, in the unlikely event of Michael Jackson and Madonna teaming up to do a gig down the local pub, they could so, yet three people singing Somerset folk songs would not be able to do so? Does the Minister not recognise that live music in pubs and inns has the potential to make a major contribution to tourism in rural areas, which we have already said we want to promote? Dr. Howells: We are straying into very dangerous territory. For a simple urban boy such as me, the idea of listening to three Somerset folk singers sounds like hell. Having said that, the hon. Gentleman is right: music does enliven many pubs and restaurants. It should thrive. Silly rules are preventing it from doing so.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 07:02 PM

Ian HP has now started a thread urging people to complain about DCMS Minister Kim Howell's comment on Somerset folk singers. I think this was a very tongue in cheek comment and that it would be counter-productive to make a big issue of it - though I wouldn't discourage anyone from pointing out how much fun people can have singing in a pub, especially in the West Country .


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 07:22 PM

As I stated in the other thread, it is the very best time to make a big issue out of it. The issues for folk music are not even a tiny part of this licensing reform and it is up to us to ensure that this serious subject and threat is not used for cheap jokes.

This is only the beginning of the struggle and by no means the end. What measures is Mr Howells introducing to deal with opressive local authorities, in the meantime?

The answers are designed to get our MPs off of their backs. And has happened because of the pressure that many of us have been applying. It is up to us to get more of our MPs pressing them not to ease off.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 06:11 PM

The latest locally is that the Cove is to have a valid PEL, as the public hearing took place today.

The hearing result was one of those fudges designed to keep everyone happy, it could have been worse. It was a step forward that the officer's recommendation was not imposed. Mainly I think due to the licensee's argument about the safety and public order aspect of the curfew. He rather forcefully stated that if the curfew was imposed he would not hold the charity event as he considered the condition unsafe and unworkable.

They went away to decide but came back still insisting on a non-standard condition of their own.

The 6.00 pm curfew was not imposed but the outside charity event must cease at 11.00 pm. This is the only electrical, amplified music allowed to take place outside but non-electric non-amplified music, i.e. Morris Dancing and acoustic instruments can take place outside. That is the condition but we will have to wait to see the exact wording.

We are chipping away here. They are now making a distinction they were not prepared to make before. We have gone from outside entertainment to outside musical entertainment to outside electrical amplified musical entertainment. Can they really make this distinction in the condition? Well they have anyway.

It was never established if there was or had been a substantive noise hazard presented to the objectors, given their distance from the establishment, but sadly their objections were enough to prevent any outside amplified music, except for the August charity event, from taking place.

I had to really push the issue to be able to have my say on the non-standard condition. The chairman having to ask the legal section's opinion. They eventually said it would be OK. For the public notice ask for comments and I had written commenting my support, but the hearing procedure only refers to and gives the right to speak to objectors.

The process is rather biased in favour of objectors There were two objectors present and they backtracked so much that it was difficult to see what they were actually objecting to. That left the poor old EHO, who was supporting the objectors, completely out on his own and looking very silly indeed.

The licensee forced the Licensing Manager to take responsibility for the expiry of the earlier PEL. She accepted that the renewal reminders were sent out in March and that the licensee did not get one as his licence was only issued in May. The chairman stepped in at that point to prevent her incriminating herself any further.

In hindsight, I think it was rather clever to aim high. I asked them not to impose a condition and they imposed one. Had I only asked for a distinction to be made between music that was a noise and music that was not, I suspect they would not have made any distinction. *Smiles*


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 07:21 PM

Getting somewhere!

Now what are they going to do about all those carol singers in Weymouth performing in public places, such as people's doorsteps, without a PEL? I think we should be told.

I mean, they've emphasised repeatedly that they don't have the authority in law to be flexible about these things.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 05:15 AM

But then (after obtaining the fee) demonstrated so much flexibility in law to enable them to ignore it completely.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 05:25 AM

I think my namesake, Shambles, deserves an Order of the Mudcat (silver at least) for his dogged perseverance in the face of bureaucratic jobsworthism. It looks as if the problem is at last getting national attention. In a way, Kim Howell's silly throwaway line has actually got the issue into the press and responses to it can make the more serious substantive points Roger Gall has been trying to get heard.
RtS (singing may not be a basic human right but threats of EC Human Rights legislation in any field immediately worry governments and may have the desired effect)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 08 Dec 01 - 03:10 PM

Sneaky I know but if catters and others were to make thier coments on PEL direct to Kim Howells' Constituency Office at :-

Howells, Dr Kim (Pontypridd Constituency) Pontypridd Constituency Office
The Chestnuts,16 Tyfica Rd
Pontypridd
CF37 2DA
FAX (01443) 485628

I respectfully suggest that comments on PEL reform stand a better chance of being seen by the minister if directed there.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Dec 01 - 11:59 AM

It is not open to the authority to disapply the legal requirements to hold a PEL in respect of one particular type of entertainment. This Authority has a duty to apply legislation fairly and impartially.

The above was expressed in the report to the 05/06/01 Social /Community Committee meeting.

This is exactly what the panel of members have subsequently done, in imposing their non-standard condition to the Cove House Inn's new PEL at the hearing set up for this on 05/12/01. It could be argued that the panel making these distinctions is the proper thing to do but for this to happen the activity first needs to be put at risk by being classed as a public entertainment and run the risk of the case not ever being presented to a panel.

1 The licensee just stops the activity and does not apply for a PEL.
2 If an application is made and not objected to, the panel will not need to be set up.

A common sense distinction has now been made by the panel between electrical amplified music and music which is not this, based on objectors concerns about loud rock music presenting a possible noise hazard.

This was a common sense distinction reflecting a wider more balanced view that did not appear to be an option for the council's officers, whose first recommendation, which was implemented by them alone, was to prevent 'all outside entertainment'.

When this was seen to have prevented Morris Dancing and non-musical entertainment, this was changed to 'all outside musical entertainment'.

The panel was asked for the level and extent of any possible future noise hazard to be addressed by the appropriate noise legislation rather than impose a non-standard condition to the PEL.

The above reaffirms the risks presented to customers activities that have never received any public complaints, By the activity being described as public entertainment, its participants as performers and being caught up in legislation never designed for such a purpose.

From the report for the original hearing scheduled for 09/05/01. Backgound As a result of the Licensing Manager witnessing an unlicensed performance of public entertainment at the premises, the licensee's were invited to apply for a Public Entertainment Licence.

For the noise concerns were old ones that had been dealt with and unrelated to the application but were responsible for the hearings being required and resulting delays and expense. The noise objections were only resurfacing because the customer's activities had been classed as public entertainment and the procedure then requiring that the public were asked to comment on the PEL application.

If the council's officers had been instructed not to consider members of the public making music for their own enjoyment as performers in a public entertainment, the risk to the activity and all of the delays, uncertainty, expense to the taxpayers and bad publicity for the borough could have been avoided.

I can only hope that lessons are leaned from this and that it will not be repeated. For there is still the matter of identical activities continuing to take place in another pub, without a PEL. I trust that common sense will prevail before we have to go through the same procedure again and risk this activity.

I am not too hopeful, however.............


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 03:51 PM

Ahhh! More press coverage - This time with a glorious technicolour picture of :-

The Shambles.
The Cove Inn
The Landlord of the Cove Inn.

Sorry but its a slow loader Click Here - Then click on the Western Daily Post.

Gareth


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 04:50 PM

Thanks Gareth

A prize for the best caption to the photo. From that it looks a very serious business indeed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 07:23 PM

Caption Comp.

"Yes - But did you tell the good Councillors that it was a Banjo ?"

or

" Careful - You now Kim Howells' view on West Counrty Banjo players"

Gareth

Ps all entries here good catters _ The best will end up on the Internet.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Dec 01 - 07:54 AM

See also Help change music in my country


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 19 Dec 01 - 03:56 PM

Hi Shambles et al

Sheila Miller has asked me to post her contribution because she hasn't got the hang of posting to Mudcat:-

I am rather disturbed by the fact that people seem to think the government is going to amend the law to make things better for folk music. That's not necessarily the case. The new law will not be law for at least two years, assuming that it happens at all (which cannot be guaranteed). There's also no way of knowing what will be in it when it does eventually reach the statute book: it may be even more restrictive than the present situation - for example, if it gets rid of the two-in-a-bar rule and doesn't give us a better rule for small musical events, it will damage folk clubs even more than the present situation. And, until it does become law (if it does), those councils that are using the present situation to stop music happening in pubs and other folk club and session venues should be prevented from stamping out that music.

Kitty


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Dec 01 - 04:23 PM

What's needed is for a council with PEL responsibilities (ie not a County Council) to decide to formally adopt a sensible policy.

This can then be a precedent, and a focus for us to press other councils to follow suit.

It would also provide an occasion to lobby Kim Howells, directly and via MPs, urging him to make a public statement saying that the government welcomes this sensible approach, in contrast to "the over-zealous enforcement by a handful of local authorities" that he has criticised.

It sounds to me as if, under the pressure from Shambles and from others writing letters - especially Americans, Weymouth may have started to move in this direction. More pressure please.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 19 Dec 01 - 04:50 PM

Thank you Kitty. Could you thank and ask Sheila if she she could explain here some of the the details of her local experiences?

The next meeting locally is the 15 January. The officers are still trying to limit the discussion of this item. Given their complete command of these meetings, they provide advance 'advice' and can talk freely, where a member of the public can only speak for 2 minutes, success is not really likely in this set-up.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: ATTENTION ALL UK FOLKIES URGENT HELP?
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Dec 01 - 01:51 PM

Just like to wish all our readers (and helpers) a Merry Christmas and a nice holiday.

It may seem to you that this whole thing has been going on for much longer but this December we are also celebrating our session's first birthday. Let us hope that it has all been worth the struggle.

Thanks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 15 August 4:56 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.