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Live Music Inquiry at National Assembly of Wales Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee

The MU was delighted to give evidence as part of a live music inquiry held by the National Assembly of Wales’ Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee.

Published: 21 October 2019 | 12:00 AM Updated: 28 April 2021 | 4:30 PM
Photograph of Cardiff Bay
Discussing some of the big issues affecting musicians working in the live sector in Wales. Photo credit: Shutterstock

Phil Kear, newly appointed MU Assistant General Secretary, joined Regional Organiser for Wales & South West England Andy Warnock and representatives of UK Music to discuss some of the big issues affecting musicians working in the live sector in Wales.

On protecting venues

“Our concern is around smaller venues closing, and additional support for those smaller 300 capacity and under spaces.

“That’s the area where our members get to learn their trade, get their first professional payments, and our concern is that a number of those has closed and we want to see replacements.”

MU Assistant General Secretary Phil Kear on keeping music live in Wales.

On licensing

“It [the Licensing Act] almost tries to discourage activities from happening at the outset. There’s no real objective within the Licensing Act that really pushes for culture. Although this is one of the main regulatory frameworks for culture, there’s nothing in it to really empower culture to happen.

“It’s all about protecting from nuisance, public disorder, that kind of thing... I think if this Committee looks at how you can empower that legislation to be proactive and try to encourage events rather than discourage events, then that would be a step in the right direction.”

Tom Kiehl, UK Music Deputy CEO and Director of Public Affairs on the legacy of Form 696 and creating the right environment for venues to succeed.

On access to music education for every child

“We know that there are issues in Conwy and announcements not too long ago about cutting funding there. The situation is not looking any better.

“Everyone is clear that action needs to be taken... Because it would be a shame to do all this work, the mapping of the venues etc., but the talent pipeline is really important.

“Without the support at the beginning, you’re not developing the musicians or the audiences of the future.”

Andy Warnock, MU Regional Organiser for Wales & South West England on letting every child learn music.

On Brexit

“We’re concerned about musicians having to get visas, having to carnet for their equipment, having to sort out VAT on merchandise, and effectively all these additional financial costs that will happen implicated by what could potentially happen in a ‘No deal Brexit’."

UK Music Policy & Research Officer Sam Murray on working in the EU post-Brexit.

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