Ask your MP to stand up for music and the arts

The MU are asking members to contact their MP and ask them to come along to meet the MU on 22 June to hear about the issues that are of concern to musicians.

The MU write: “Post-election, we need to get as many MPs as possible from all political parties interested in vital music-related matters.

“We particularly aim to focus on the protection of live music venues and gigging musicians, but we will also be briefing them about all of our other main concerns, such as arts funding, fair pay for musicians, music education etc.

“You can contact your MP through the They Work For You website and we have included a model letter below should you wish to use it.”


Dear [Name of MP]

Congratulations on your recent election.

I am concerned about a growing problem facing music and other entertainment venues, which are increasingly at risk of closure as a result of noise complaints. I am writing to ask if you would urge the Government to take action to protect them; and, in particular, if it would adopt the Agent of Change principle into planning law.

Live music and entertainment are an essential part of culture in the UK and our venues should be protected as cultural institutions for the benefit of all. They must, of course, stick to the terms of their licence and residents must be able to complain if they do not comply or are causing a genuine nuisance. But a growing number of well-established venues have been forced to close or to undertake expensive noise reduction work as a result of noise complaints and abatement notices served by new developments – partly as a result of changes under the previous Government to permitted development rights.

We are calling on the Government to introduce an ‘Agent of Change Principle’ law, such as that recently introduced in Australia, which would put the legal responsibility of remedying any issues on to the person or persons who have brought about the changes that inadvertently affect an individual’s business. Under this planning principle, if an entertainment venue is in place before new development happens nearby, the developer is responsible for properly soundproofing the new properties, and the venue bears no responsibility, other than to continue to operate within the terms of their existing licence. Equally, if a new venue opens in a residential area, the venue is responsible for the cost.

The Performers’ Alliance All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) are holding a drop-in event on Monday 22 June, between 4.00 and 5.30pm, in the Jubilee Room (just off Westminster Hall). If you have a few minutes, we would be very grateful if you could drop-in to co-sign a letter from the unions to the Culture Secretary asking him to take action to protect venues from closure. The event will also provide info about the work of the unions of the Performers’ Alliance that work alongside the APPG (Equity, the Musicians’ Union and the Writers’ Guild), our current campaigns and how we can work with you more closely in [name of constituency].

Do let me know if you’re able to drop-in on 22nd. I hope you can make it!

Yours sincerely,


[Your name and address to confirm you are a constituent.]