Red Tape cut for live music venues

From 1 October 2012, thousands of small businesses and venues that host live music events will be freed from the burdens of unnecessary red tape. Venues in England and Wales with a capacity of under 200 people will no longer need a license for live music.

The reforms are part of a wider strategy to free businesses from red tape which ministers say will give them more freedom to grow. The move is part of the Red Tape Challenge, which invited the public, business and the voluntary sector to give their views on which regulations should stay, be improved, or be scrapped altogether.

UK Music, which represents the music industry, estimates that the Live Music Act could enable 13,000 more venues to start holding live music events.

The Government is making it easier for pubs and clubs to stage live music, by removing regulatory burdens on venues. Specific licenses will no longer be needed for live unamplified music performed in any location, and live amplified music in on-licensed premises and workplaces for audiences of up to 200 people, between 8am and 11pm.

Business Minister Michael Fallon said: “From today businesses are freed from the red tape that holds them back.

“We are ending over-the-top bureaucracy that stifles community groups and pubs wanting to put on small events.

“But this is just the start – we’ve set ourselves the challenging target of scrapping or reducing a total of 3,000 regulations. I’m determined to slim down regulation and make Britain an easier place to start and run a business.”

The change was introduced through a private member's bill, introduced by Liberal Democrat Don Foster, in order to amend some of the bureaucracy imposed on gigs by the 2003 Licensing Act.

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