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4 of 10 live venues gone in 8 years

The Music Venue Trust have launched a bid to secure more political support for their attempts to save premises that put on live music across the UK.

They’ve compiled a report that says around four out of every ten venues have closed since 2007 – and many of them have gone as a result of heavy-handed environment laws.

If the trend continues, commerce worth £1.6bn a year could be lost to the UK.

Many pubs and clubs have been forced to shut down after homes were built nearby and new tenants complained about noise, with only one complaint being necessary to make closure possible in some cases.

The Trust will present their report to London mayor Boris Johnson, highlighting that the number of live venues in the city has dropped from 430 to 245 in eight years.

And they’ll mark Venues Day on October 20 with a call for the government to conduct an urgent review of noise laws.

Trust Chief exec Mark Davyd tells the Guardian: “Venues are so inspirational – they’re places where people can get involved in culture as a first step.

“The point of a grassroots venue is that you’ve got a maverick who’s prepared to put on a guy dressed as a plant, making white noise through a trumpet, that everyone thinks is awful.”

He adds: “These are incubators for other industries. They’re places where the guy who becomes the lighting engineer at the Royal Opera House started out.”

The Trust aims to concentrate on the UK capital, but Davyd argues: “As we lay out clear and achievable plans in London, other local authorities will look and think, ‘Yes, the music venue is an important part of our local economy.”

Patron Frank Turner says: “The large successful acts of this world didn’t pop fully-formed into this world. These are skills and talents that have to be honed somewhere. If we’re careless about the places where this sort of culture can evolve, then it won’t exist.

“The only thing you will be left with at the top of the food chain is Simon Cowell.”

Is your favourite venue about to close?

Martin Kielty

Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band (opens in new tab), a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories (opens in new tab) about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.