Music Venue Trust on Tour! Welsh Music Venues meeting – 17 May 2016 at Cardiff’s Clwb Ifor Bach

Music Venue Trust, created in 2014 to protect and champion the UK’s grassroots live music venues, has announced its first event in Wales and is inviting venues from across the country to come together on 17 May 2016 at Cardiff’s Clwb Ifor Bach. The Welsh Venues Meeting aims to gather the people responsible for Wales’ live music scene and offer them the opportunity to discuss the highs and lows of the Welsh venues circuit

The one-day event will be an opportunity for networking, to hear from national cultural and music industry organisations and crucially, to contribute to a discussion of the challenges faced on a local and national basis. Created in partnership with UK Music and with support from Arts Council of Wales, delegate passes will be free to venue representatives. Guests from across the live sector and MVT partner organisations including The Musicians’ Union, UK Music and Attitude is Everything will take part in the day, offering information, tips and experiences to drive the discussion.

Music venues have played a crucial role in the development of British music over the last 40 years, nurturing local talent, providing a platform for artists to build their careers and develop their music and their performance skills. In a sometimes difficult, but vital industry, grassroots venues in Wales have faced closure due to issues such as noise complaints, funding shortages and changes in licensing conditions, which can prove heartbreaking not only for music fans, but the staff who help run each venue, promoters who organise shows, up-and-coming musicians and the wider local economy.

Since the first Venues Day event in December 2014, awareness of the precarious position in which the UK’s small independent venues find themselves has grown enormously. Music Venue Trust, the charity created to champion and protect the nation’s grassroots music, continues to lead this work and recently announced Venues Day 2016 which will take place on Tuesday 18 October at Roundhouse, London. Information and views gathered from the May meeting, together with the English Regional Meetings that took place in April (with input from over 90 venues) will feed into developing the programme of this national networking event. Music Venue Trust has created the Music Venues Alliance, an association which represents well over 200 venues, to assist in pooling resources, sharing examples of good practice and demonstrating the reach of grassroots music venues across the UK’s towns and cities.

Beverley Whitrick, Strategic Director of Music Venue Trust explained: “As a UK-wide organisation it’s important for us to emphasise that we represent grassroots music venues from across Britain and in order to do this we need to go out and talk to the people that run those venues. We are aware that we have a limited number of Music Venues Alliance members in Wales to date but are keen to build our networks and listen to the issues for venues there. Some of the challenges will be the same as in England or Scotland but others may be specific to Wales so this is something we need to know.”

Jo Dipple CEO of UK Music said: “We are looking forward to visiting Cardiff to discuss the many challenges facing small venues in Wales. Last year UK Music published the Wish You Were Here, a report which showed music tourism generated £95million towards the Welsh economy in 2014, whilst attracting over 211,000 music fans to live music events. Music venues are vital part of the ecosystem that incubates new local talent and must be encouraged. Our live music census in nearby Bristol last October revealed that half of the venues surveyed said they were negatively affected by developmental, noise or planning issues. Getting conditions right to support all Welsh music venues and encourage them to flourish is a priority for UK Music. In June we will publish a new version of Wish You Were for 2016, which will look in greater depth at Cardiff and the Welsh live music scene and the enormous contribution it makes to tourism in Wales.”

This first Music Venue Trust event in Wales is open to representatives of grassroots music venues from across the country and is free to attend, with a networking lunch included. The day will be held at Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff on 17 May 2016, from 11am-4pm. Travel bursaries to attend the meeting are also available on request. See www.musicvenuetrust.com for further details or email [email protected] to request a place.

For more information, or to arrange any interviews with event partners, or your local venue, please contact Kieron Jones: [email protected] /07502 992 796

About Music Venue Trust

Music Venue Trust was created in January 2014 to protect the UK live music network. Its immediate focus is on securing the long term future of the grassroots iconic venues such as Clwb Ifor Bach, Southampton Joiners, Tunbridge Wells Forum, The 100 Club, Exeter Cavern, Hull Adelphi, Manchester Band on the Wall etc. These venues have played a crucial role in the development of British music over the last 40 years, nurturing local talent, providing a platform for artists to build their careers and develop their music and their performance skills. Music Venue Trust has a clear 5 year plan to ensure those venues continue to play their vital role in supporting the British music success story.
www.musicvenuetrust.com

About UK Music

UK Music is the umbrella organisation which represents the collective interests of the UK’s commercial music industry – from artists, musicians, songwriters and composers, to record labels, music managers, music publishers, studio producers, music licensing organisations and the live music industry. The members of UK Music are: AIM, BASCA, BPI, FAC, MMF, MPA, MPG, MU, PPL, PRS for Music and the Live Music Group.
www.ukmusic.org