A crowdfunding drive has been set up to help support independent music venues across the UK who are suffering financially due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Venues across the country have been forced to close their doors in recent days after the government urged people to stop going to pubs, clubs and music venues to stop the spread of the virus.
But with people staying indoors, smaller venues are feeling the strain – and now you can do your bit to help.
The Virtual Pint Just Giving page is looking to raise £5000 (opens in new tab) by selling music fans virtual drinks – from a cream soda at £2 right up to a bottle Dom Perignon at £200.
A statement on the website reads: “There's a lot of our favourite venues right now at financial risk, and these are vital for the arts and community around them.
“So the principal is this – instead of going to the pub, you can buy a virtual pint for £3.50, a virtual cocktail for £5, or a virtual round for £20. In fact there's a whole menu – including non-alcoholic beverages – to choose from.”
Fans donating £20 or more to the fund will be entered into a draw to win prizes, including festival tickets, merch, concert tickets, a bar tab for your local pub and more.
Half of the money raised will go to the Music Venue Trust (opens in new tab), while the other half will go directly to help out smaller venues across the UK.
So go on, buy you and your friends a couple of virtual drinks – and spread the word using the hashtag #VirtualPint on social media.
Earlier this week UK Music called for “urgent clarity” from the government on the impact of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic on the live music scene (opens in new tab).
UK Music’s acting CEO Tom Kiehl said: “Unless music businesses and venues get help fast to get them though this desperately difficult period, the sad reality is the vital businesses and much-loved venues will go to the wall.”
We’ve set up a live hub page to let music fans know what innovative steps bands are taking to generate income during the coronavirus lockdown (opens in new tab). This will be updated regularly with news as we get it.