A Victory For Small UK Music Venues As Business Rates Slashed By 50%

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In a huge victory for grassroots music venues across the UK, the Music Venue Trust has secured a 50% slash in business rates.

All across the world, the music community continues to face the ongoing crisis when it comes to the closer of live music venues; often not due to lack of business, but rather a lack of funding as business rates have steadily increased while business owners struggle to keep up with the increasingly high costs required to keep the venues intact.

In a huge victory for independent music venues across the UK – the Government has announced that business rates for small and medium grassroots live music venues will be slashed by a whopping 50%. 230 music venues will benefit greatly, with an estimated £7,500 to be saved by each venue every year. 

The victory comes after a determined campaign by the Music Venue Trust, who have been fighting to secure the survival of live music venues; stating that they have endured a ‘prolonged crisis’ as the closure of music venues in the last decade reached a depressing 35%. The business rate slash follows another victory, with Music Venue Trust working with Arts Council England in securing a ring-fenced fund in May 2019, which released £1.5million of subsidy into the sector.

In an excerpt from a statement by the CEO of Arts Council England, Darren Henley:

Grassroots Music Venues are essential both for our world-renowned music industry and communities across the country, and there needs to be a collective effort from both the public sector and music industry to support them.

Following the business rate slash, Strategic Director of Music Venue Trust Beverley Whitrick stated:

This is a much needed and long overdue boost for Grassroots Music Venues. Music Venue Trust has been working hard with government on this issue for the last four years and it is a huge breakthrough for us and the members of the Music Venues Alliance. We’d like to thank our partners at UK Music and Musicians’ Union for their support and help in getting this over the line.

CEO and Founder of the Music Venue Trust, Mark Davyd expressed that there is still much work to be done when it comes to this issue: 

This latest announcement from Government is another foundation stone in the support Music Venue Trust is building so that we can deliver a vibrant, sustainable, world class Grassroots Music Venue sector to artists and audiences. There’s still a lot to be done on this specific issue, and we look forward to working with the governments in Scotland and Northern Ireland to make sure that GMVs across the UK have a level playing field when it comes to Business Rates and Public Subsidies.

Read more on the official Music Venue Trust website.