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MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music

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Nemesis 05 Dec 02 - 06:00 PM
vectis 05 Dec 02 - 08:16 PM
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Subject: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music (UK)
From: Nemesis
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 06:00 PM

Pete McLelland of Hobgoblin Music has asked me to pass this on

Pete McClelland
pete@mcmail.demon.co.uk

This document sums up my personal views and those of all of us at Hobgoblin
Music on the licensing disaster which is unfolding. I know that Hamish
Birchall and others have put in a lot of work on everyone's behalf on the licensing issue, but most musicians are still not at all aware of what is going on. Please circulate this document as widely as possible, and feel free to contact me with any helpful ideas. The bill itself can be found
here:

LIcensing BIlland here is an article from yesterday's Times The Times

The new Licensing Bill has been introduced to parliament on 14th November
2002. I believe it is an assault on our civil liberties as it clearly restricts participation in the performing arts.


If passed as is it will be a

disaster for musicians, event organisers, music teachers, studios and retailers, and bring repression unseen for centuries for our whole musical culture in England and Wales.



No other country in the world restricts the

arts in such a way.

It is essential that maximum effort is put in by everyone affected right now
to try to get the bill amended as far as possible to deal with the main
objections listed here.


This can be achieved
by lobbying of your MP - write

to them now -


by contacting the media in your area,
by offering your support to the campaigning

bodies

the Musicians Union,
The Music Industries Association
the Arts Council.

Key Objections:


1. Making music should not be a licensable activity. Live Music should not be
licensed at all - it isn't in Scotland, and most other countries. Existing
and recently enhanced health and safety, fire, and noise regulations are
already in place across the whole of the UK and provide adequate protection
in themselves. The licensing procedure requires clearance from police, fire,
health & safety, local authority, and local residents, and may come with
expensive conditions attached. It will not be a simple matter at all.


2 The scope of locations covered is far too wide. The new Act will make
music licensable not just in pubs and clubs and places where alcohol is
sold, but also in private homes and gardens, in churches, fields and all
other places. This is not a trivial license easily obtained, it is the same
one as required to sell alcohol in pubs. There can be no justification for
requiring a license to make music in these secondary locations. Tens of
thousands of weddings, private parties, village fetes, School concerts etc
will be banned.

3 The punishment proposed is way too strong. It should not be a criminal
offence punishable by 6 months in prison or a #20,000 fine to play music.
The penalties are far too strong. This is a clear civil liberties issue. The
Musicians should not be liable to prosecution themselves if hired to play in
unlicensed premises (Clause 134 makes them liable) (Clause 188 makes any
location at all count as premises). Musicians will always have to check
first whether a license is in place before performing, and this may not be
easy in practice.


4 The scope of activities covered is far too wide. A new activity "Provision
of "Entertainment Facilities" will become licensable (schedule 1, paragraph
3). This vague clause will catch Music Shops, Music Studios, and Music and
Dance teachers as it stands. All of these activities will require a license.
It will become illegal, and punishable by prison to teach music, use a
rehearsal room, try out an instrument in a music shop, make a recording in a recording studio, unless a license is first obtained.

5 Amplified broadcasts still legal. It cannot be right that amplified
broadcast events should be legal while singing happy birthday by a single
person will be illegal.


6 Folk Traditions under even greater threat. Also the folk traditions of
this country have been handed down in pubs for centuries, this new "none in
a bar" law will severely harm a national treasure which was already under
threat from the existing "two in a bar" law. It cannot be right that
Scottish traditions can be continued, while English and Welsh ones are to be
made illegal.

Specific Issues, and Amendments Needed

1 Schedule 1, paragraph 1 states that music will be a licensable activity if
the entertainment meets these two criteria: If it is to any extent for the
public or for members of a club, and it is also for consideration and with a
view to profit.

Sub-paragraph (6) states that raising money for charity counts as being for
profit.

Sub-paragraph (4) states that if any charge is made by any person concerned
in the organisation or management of the event (this might include a charge
by the bandleader to the organiser) or if any charge is paid by those
entertained, then the entertainment will count as being for consideration.


Paragraph 1 will catch any private party or wedding reception where an
entertainer is paid. It will also catch buskers, school concerts, choral
society events, school and village fetes, and many other currently legal
events. It will not be possible or practicable for the organiser of such a
one off event to obtain a full entertainment and drinks license, nor will
they know how to go about it even if it is made relatively easy. The events
will all have to be cancelled. Dr Howells (the culture minister) has stated
that the bill intends to make all music licensable where the artist is paid
to perform.

Subparagraph (4) seems to be the key issue here, if it were amended to
specifically not include payment to performers at an otherwise unlicensable
event, things would be much better.


2 Schedule 1 paragraph 3 which refers to "Entertainment Facilities" is
completely unacceptable. It includes the whole infrastructure of music
making in this country. This whole concept needs removing from the bill.

Examples

As an example, if you put up a marquee in your garden for your daughter's
wedding, and hire a band to play, you will be a criminal if you don't have a
licence. The band leader will be a criminal too. Both of you may go to jail,
and gain a criminal record.

Other soon to be illegal activities: Busking, Music Teaching, Selling
musical instruments, Rehearsing, Hospital concerts, Fundraiser in the
village hall, and much more.

The current laws are enforced very zealously by many authorities at present.
A landlord has recently been fined a considerable amount for allowing four
customers to sing Happy Birthday. Many other pub based folk clubs and
sessions have been shut down. We must expect this over zealous
interpretation to be applied to any new law, so it is very important that no
ambiguity is there for the local authorities to exploit.

Pete McClelland (Hobgoblin Music)




Useful contacts:


Hamish Birchall hab.drum@virgin.net
Pete McClelland

pete@hobgoblin.co.uk


House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA,
House of Lords SW1A

0WP,


Tessa Jowell MP (minister for culture)
Kim Howells MP (minister for

tourism, film and broadcasting),


Malcolm Moss MP (conservative spokesperson

on licensing),


John Whittingdale (conservative spokesperson on culture),


Paul Evans House of Commons Joint Committee on Human Rights,
www.faxyourmp.com


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: vectis
Date: 05 Dec 02 - 08:16 PM

I've contacted Norman Baker, my MP, before about this matter. As an ex-band member he IS sympathetic but relatively powerless. We need the House of Lords on our side they can adapt or block this stupid piece of legislation.
Contact your MP by all means but contact any chaps and chapesses in the Lords who you can and get them on our side. It COULD make a difference.


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Nemesis
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 04:01 AM

|I emailed Peter Bottomley . .. ours .. and he was going to speak to the Minister (which one he didn't specify.. he's a bit thick) as they were having a sing song ! tonight!

BLimey .. Lords .. who's a Lord? Thinking .. Sir Paul McCartney!! He's local .. is he a LORD ? Sir Mick Jagger .. are Sirs Lords?


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: mooman
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 04:12 AM

I shall for one (without putting anyone else at risk) be ignoring any such riduculous law if passed in the UK despite the opposition to it and, if I get sent to prison for it, so be it.

mooman


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: mooman
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 04:15 AM

P.S. A passing thought...

Does anyone know if the House of Commons applied for and got a PEL when Alicia Keys played there for underprivileged children some months ago...?

moo


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Nemesis
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 05:18 AM

HI Moo :)

Heard Lee's expecting twins?
......
Anyway, what happened to the BIG SIng idea in Trafalgar Square anyone?

I think we really need to do it!


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Pied Piper
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 05:45 AM

I contacted my Labour MP Ian Stewart, about signing EDM 1182 and he told me he could not because of his position.
I then asked him how many labour MPs have signed documents saying they will not vote against Government.
150 !!
I used to believe I lived in a democracy. Clearly I've been deluding myself.
PP


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Nemesis
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 05:54 AM

NO, sadly .. this country is going, going, nearly gone, down the pan .. just who can we trust?


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 06:43 AM

Does anyone know if the House of Commons applied for and got a PEL when Alicia Keys played there for underprivileged children some months ago...?

I think you will find that Royal palaces (including thr Palace of Westminster) are exempt from the requirement.

If ignoring the law means sending licensees to prison, it may be a very good law not to ignore, now or when it is too late.


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 06:49 AM

PRLs links to all threads


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 07:00 AM

----- Original Message -----
From: "Dai Crowther"
Newsgroups: uk.music.folk
Sent: Friday, December 06, 2002 12:58 AM
Subject: Re: Announce Licesing Bill - Lord's Amendements

In reference to a proposed Lord's amendment that safe capacities can only be applied for licensable events (i.e. not TV sports crowds only you and me singing)- and then only if the Council decides to.

"Roger Gall" wrote in message
news:asnsom$2uq$1@helle.btinternet.com...
: Why not that the Fire/Safety inspection imposes a safe capacity on all premises?


: Agreed Roger.

I am a publican as well as being a folk performer/organiser for thirty
years or so. I have a PEL because I have live music on four nights of the week, including a folk session on a Thursday.

The above proposal is the status quo. This means that I can have a soft rock duo on a Saturday night with 150 people in the pub, no doorperson, no firedoors open (indeed the can be barred if I so wish), no need for my emergency lighting etc to be operable and free from any inspection by the council.

However, on a Thursday, with thirty or so people in the pub for the
session (including audience and casual drinkers/diners) and possibly
only a guitarist, a fiddler and a singer, I must pay a doorperson
(£10.00 per hour cheapest) to oversee that numbers in the lounge bar
does not exceed 50, check and keep fire doors and beer garden gates open and clear of obstruction, with a full first aid kit ready for use. I can have the guitarist and singer back next evening, amped up to the gills, playing to a full house with none of the above in operation.

It has nothing whatsoever to do with public safety.

Di.


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: ET
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 12:16 PM

I have written to Tony Blair, John Prescott and everyone else on the list from Hobgoblin. I said this -

Re Licensing Reform and the Death of Live Music.

I appreciate that there are many and great issues of state pressing at the moment but I and thousands of like minded amateur and professional musicians would be grateful if you would kindly consider the contents of this e-mail and reflect on these provisions in the licensing bill.

Does the Department of Culture really want to reflect the culture of the Taliban. Does it really want to make criminals of musicians and organisers of charity events etc outlined in this e-mail?

I have recently visited York Minister. It advertises numerous events over the next two months, including Early Music, Classical Concerts, etc. None of these are religious services and none would therefore be exempt.   If York City Council is zealous will the Archbishop be charged under the act or ought he to apply for a liquor licence for York Minster stating in his action plan that he does not intend to sell alcohol?

I wonder how many MPs have considered this situation in this light. I am aware that many have signed an Early Day Motion expressing concern about the two in a bar rule. I am aware that the Department thinks it is freeing up musicians to restore live music.   In doing so though the "jobs worth" attitude of many local authority officials has to be seen to be believed. I know that Council Officials scoure the classified adverts of local papers looking for small events in pubs etc which do not have a public Entertainment Licence.

Please be aware of these concerns and avoid the UK becoming a world laughing stock.


Yours faithfully


Eric Twigger

To The Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Culture, Minister for Tourism, Malcolm Moss MP, John Whittingdale MP, David Davies MP.


Have I written to the write lot?   Who does one write to in the House of Lords?


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 03:04 PM

http://www.parliament.uk/directories/directories21.cfm

I suggest the best ones would be those who contributed to the Second Reading debate. Or the ones making amendments here.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld200203/ldbills/001/amend/ldam001.htm

Lords contacts and information.
http://www.parliament.uk/directories/house_of_lords_information_office.cfm


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 06 Dec 02 - 03:12 PM

It looks as if they are in a hurry to get the entertainment aspects of the Bill out of the away, so we do not have much time.

Thanks to Terry for the following.

The Minister of State, Department for Culture, Media and Sport (Baroness Blackstone):

My Lords, I beg to move the Motion standing in my name on the
Order Paper. Moved, That it be an instruction to the Committee of the Whole House to which the Licensing Bill [HL] has been committed that they consider the Bill in the following order:

Clause 1,

Schedules 1 and 2,

Clauses 2 to 4,

Clause 177,

Clauses 5 to 8,

Schedule 3,

Clauses 9 to 111,

Schedule 4,

Clauses 112 to 176,

Schedule 5,

Clauses 178 to 196,

Schedules 6 to 8.-(Baroness Blackstone.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

To save you the trouble of looking those references up,

Clause 1 deals with Licensable Activities and qualifying club activities

Schedule 1 & 2 deal with Provision of Regulated Entertainment, General
definitions and Exemptions and the provision of late night refreshment.

Clause 2 to 4 apply to the licensing authorities (Our friendly local
government officials!)

Clause 177 is the guidance for interpreting the above sections.

The rest you can look up for yourselves. My concern is that the
Entertainment issue has been pushed to the fore in the debate. That would be a major achievement if it were not for the fact that the debate is being forced through BEFORE (again according to Hansard) the government makes the 79 pages of guidance notes fully available to Parliament.

Anyone smell anything fishy here?

If you're pleased to have the matter dealt with so swiftly, no action
required! If not, guess what?

Terry


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 03:03 PM

This from Hamish Birchall.

The Liberal Democrats are leading the way in the Lords by sponsoring key live music amendments to the draconian 'none in a bar' Bill (see below for URL link and details).

The amendments would exempt live acoustic music, or live music where amplification is no more audible than the unamplified instruments, or live music that was incidental to other activities. Another amendment would exempt small premises, providing the entertainment finishes at 11pm, and no charge is made for entry. This is very close to the Scottish licensing regime as it applies to live music, and what the Musicians' Union recommended for England and Wales.

PLEASE SHOW YOUR SUPPORT BY WRITING TO LORD REDESDALE and BARONESS BUSCOMBE (and any other Lords who have an arts interest, urging them to support these amendments): House of Lords, London SW1A OPW (switchboard: 020 7219 3000).

Credit for the original idea and wording of the acoustic exemption belongs to folk musician lawyer Richard Bridge. The wording was further refined by Robin Bynoe, also a musician and lawyer. Robin has also helped considerably with some of the MU proposed amendments that were rejected by the Department for Culture before the Bill's publication on 15 November. Both Richard and Robin have worked pro bono publico, and I am extremely grateful for their help.

I met with Lord Redesdale earlier this week particularly to discuss the acoustic amendment. He has taken the initiative by sponsoring this and others relating to exemptions for educational and social establishments. He is supported by Baroness Buscombe (Shadow Conservative culture Minister in the Lords), as well as Lord Luke and Baroness Harris of Richmond. Baroness Buscombe has already put down amendments that would exempt churches. She has also introduced an amendment that would include satellite or terrestrial tv broadcasts as a licensable entertainment.

The Lib Dems and Conservatives combined are the majority of the Lords. While we cannot know whether the Government would accept these amendments when the Bill goes to the Commons next Spring, they nevertheless represent a serious challenge to the Government.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld200203/ldbills/001/amend/am001-f.htm

THE LORD REDESDALE
THE BARONESS HARRIS OF RICHMOND
THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE LORD LUKE

Page 110, line 32, at end insert—

"Unamplified Music incidental to certain other activities

The provision of entertainment consisting of the performance of live music (and not comprising or including the playing of recorded music) is not to be regarded as the provision of regulated entertainment for the purposes of this Act to the extent that the conditions specified in paragraph (2) are satisfied and to the extent that it is incidental to some other activity that is not itself—

a)entertainment of a description falling within paragraph (2), or

b)the provision of entertainment facilities

(2)The conditions referred to in paragraph (1) are that—

a)the other activity referred to in paragraph (1) is the subject of, and is undertaken in accordance with a licence granted under this Act; and

b)the number of persons undertaking the activity referred to in paragraph (a) above does not exceed 100 or such other number of persons permitted to be present in accordance with the licence referred to in paragraph (a); and

c)the live music being performed is not provided in whole or part by means of, or with the assistance of, electrical or electronic amplification, or made more readily audible by such amplification either in the place where the performance is occurring or in any other place."

Page 110, line 32, at end insert—

"Small premises

The provision of entertainment or entertainment facilities is not to be regarded as regulated entertainment for the purposes of this Act if—

a)it is undertaken on premises on which no more than 250 persons are present;

b)no charge is made for entry; and

c)the provision of the entertainment creases no later than 11 pm"

THE LORD REDESDALE
THE BARONESS HARRIS OF RICHMOND
THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE LORD LUKE

Page 110, line 32, at end insert—

"Educational and social establishments

The provision of entertainment or entertainment facilities is not to be regarded as regulated entertainment for the purposes of this Act if it is undertaken on the premises of—

a)an educational establishment for purposes directly connected to the activities of the establishment;

b)a prison for purposes incidental to the activities of the prison;

c)a hospital for purposes incidental to the activities of the hospital; or

d)a museum or public gallery for purposes incidental to the activities of the museum or public gallery."

THE LORD REDESDALE
THE BARONESS HARRIS OF RICHMOND
THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE LORD LUKE

Page 111, leave out lines 13 and 14


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 03:12 PM

George was questioning Pete's 'happy birthday' incident, on the Usenet News Groups.

I would like to see some evidence of this case. Could you supply names, places, details? I honestly can't believe it would happen without some other aggravated events compounding the "offence". George

Yes but speaking from personal experience, the agravating event can just be that a council officer takes a dislike to a particular licensee or is acting on malicious complaint from a rival licensee (usually one who has paid for a PEL).

The following is the information requested-

Happy birthday to you... you're nicked!

Some years ago, Mr Powell decided that a PEL might be a good idea after Hackney successfully prosecuted him for allowing 7 members of the public to sing Happy Birthday. This was more than the maximum two 'performers' allowed without a PEL. The maximum penalty is a £20,000 fine and six months in prison. Mr Powell got off lightly - he was fined £500 and ordered to pay over £1500 costs.

The offending occasion was indeed the birthday of one member of a (legal) singer/guitarist duo then performing at The Globe. Friends had come along to celebrate. Sadly a Council Enforcement Officer was in the audience.

ENDS

Hamish Birchall


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: allanwill
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 04:03 PM

UNBELIEVABLE!!!


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Nemesis
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 06:28 PM

what happened to the suggestion that we did a mass sing/thing in Trafalgar Square to get publicity .. Pete says he'll publicise anything people arrange and tell them about


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: pavane
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 07:21 PM

I have faxed my MP (Peter Hain) for the third time, not that I expect it to do much good. The las twice, he just passed it on to the department of culture, who gave the usual 'Nanny knows best and it will make things better' type of response. This time I have hinted that this might not be what I want.

(Maybe I should mention cricket pitches? We have long memories)


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: pavane
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 07:24 PM

Perhaps we should ALL swamp the councils with applications for licences to perform music in our houses, just in case we may need them? How many per council would be needed to clog the system up?


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Dec 02 - 09:51 PM

Fancy footwork lands pubs in the dock

Colin Blackstock
Friday November 22, 2002
The Guardian


The pub owners tried everything to stop it including putting up signs, rearranging the furniture and even asking people to refrain. But it was all to no avail: council officials diagnosed outbreaks of spontaneous dancing, and the owners were fined £5,000.
Officials from Westminster city council initially spotted four people dancing to piped music at the Pitcher and Piano pubs in Soho, central London. Later, as the rhythm took control, that figure rose to five. On another visit as many as 11 people were dancing. Something had to be done.

The council took action against Wolverhampton and Dudley Breweries, which runs the two pubs, where customers had been spotted getting down to the piped music.

With their patrons caught red-footed, the company pleaded guilty to not having a proper licence which allows dancing.

It was fined £2,500 for each offence, plus costs of £1,600 at a London magistrates court on Wednesday.

Derek Andrews, Wolverhampton and Dudley's managed house chief, said the company had tried everything in its power to stop customers from breaking into dance, even going so far as to turn the music off, but people still continued to dance.

Council officials have also served two written warnings on another pub in Wardour Street, Soho, about people found "swaying", according to the licensed trade's newspaper the Publican.

Under current law, dancing is only allowed if premises have been granted a public entertainment licence.

Bob Currie, director of the community protection department at Westminster council, said in a letter quoted in the Publican: "Dancing could be described as the rhythmic moving of the legs, arms and body usually changing positions within the floor space available and whether or not accompanied by musical support."

Link to story, and details of how you can write to the Guardian.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,845266,00.html


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: Nemesis
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 11:07 AM

Still asking, that's all, through the morass of information, whether anyone has taken the idea of the Trafalgar Square protest any further?


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Subject: RE: MSG: x Pete Mclelland Hobgoblin Music
From: MMario
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 11:11 AM

They better be careful - that description of "dancing" also fits areobic excercise! Health clubs had better plan on getting PEL's


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Mudcat time: 7 August 9:52 AM EDT

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