Small music venues 'are still not being valued in the way they should be'

Gig venue

Small music venues are still not being valued as "little sanctuaries" according to musicians and a charity fighting to protect venues.

"We're still not seeing investment coming into the sector," said Mark Davyd, founder of the Music Venue Trust.

He was speaking before a charity gig at London's Roundhouse.

Everything Everything, Public Service Broadcasting and The Carnabys were all on the bill to raise funds for venues.

The money raised will be used to provide legal and expert advice to venues facing battles over planning, development, noise and licensing.

It's been estimated that up to 40% of music venues in London have shut down over the past 10 years, a pattern the Music Venue Trust says is echoed in many other towns and cities.

The charity says that things have improved slightly over the past year, particularly with a change in the Town and Country Planning Act.

Since April it has meant local authorities must consider the impact of noise on new residents from existing businesses.

Jeremy Pritchard of Everything Everything
Image caption Jeremy Pritchard of Everything Everything used to play at his local venue in Tunbridge Wells

Mark Davyd says fewer music venues are closing, but it's still not enough.

"The venues are not valued in the way they should be. We're not really seeing local authorities and the government giving more support to venues as they need at this important time.

"We need more bands in local towns where you can walk and go and see them, then we'll get young people back in live music venues because it'll be on their doorstep.

I don't think you can replace that [live music] experience with anything digital or technology driven
Mark Davyd
Music Venue Trust

"I don't think you can replace that experience with anything digital or technology driven."

Jeremy Pritchard from Everything Everything told Newsbeat that small venues are vital to local economies, cultures and the bands themselves.

He said they "help you work out who you are as a musician or a band".

"Even if you're just someone who likes to go and see live music then these are little sanctuaries in what might otherwise be hostile environments for people like that."

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