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Top venues in call for help

4 June 2020

ECHOING THE stark challenges facing venues across the country, operators of two of London’s most prestigious concert halls have called for increased government support to prevent them from closure. Royal Albert Hall CEO Craig Hassall has warned that the 5,200-capacity venue will be unable to operate under the government’s proposed…

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AIF warns of ‘festival wasteland’

23 May 2020

THE ASSOCIATION of Independent Festivals (AIF) warns of a ‘festival wasteland’ next year without urgent Government action It says 92 per cent of the businesses behind member festivals could “collapse under refund requests”, unless the Government takes action to safeguard them.  AIF says the independent festival sector could be facing…

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Venues campaign raises £1.5 million

19 May 2020

THE MUSIC Venue Trust (MVT) campaign to raise money to support the grassroots venue sector during the Covid-19 lockdown and aftermath, has passed its original target of £1 million – since raised to £1.5m – through the Crowdfunder website, and that figure does not appear to include a £450,000 donation…

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Spherical distraction

19 May 2020

THE PLAN by New York’s Madison Square Garden Entertainment (MSGE)  to build a rival arena to London’s The O2 (cap. 21,000) has met with resistance from train line operator MTR Elizabeth Line. The 21,500-capacity MSG Sphere, just three miles from The O2 in East London, will be MSGE’s first venue…

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Industry launches funds to help those hit by lockdown

2 May 2020

AN ARRAY of relief funds have been set up to help artistes, crew, contractors and venues who are suffering financial hardship as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak. Arts Council England (ACE) has established a £160 million emergency fund aimed at helping organisations, musicians and freelancers who are struggling financially…

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New hammer-blow to Scottish live music

25 April 2020

THE SUMMER live music season in Scotland has been “wiped out”, say promoters, following the announcement by Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon that social distancing measures will remain in place “possibly for the rest of this year”. The announcement was accompanied by a Scottish government paper stating, “We are likely…

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CMA confirms Phase 1 Viagogo-StubHub probe

24 April 2020

BUYERS OF resold tickets on Viagogo and StubHub may lose out whatever decision the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) makes about their potential merger, according to anti-touting campaigner FanFair Alliance (FFA). The CMA confirmed this month it will enter Phase 1 of an investigation into the acquisition of eBay-owned StubHub…

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Former Labour deputy leader Tom Watson joins UK Music

18 April 2020

FORMER DEPUTY leader of the Labour party Tom Watson has been appointed chair of industry umbrella organisation UK Music, taking over from Andy Heath who will continue as chairman of Beggars Music. Sheffield-born Watson spent nearly two decades as a Labour MP and was shadow secretary of state for digital, culture…

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Bristol’s YTL Arena set for 2023 opening

18 April 2020

THE PROPOSED 17,000-capacity YTL Arena in Bristol has cleared its final planning hurdle, following the decision by Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, not to review the project’s consent, approved by Bristol and South Gloucestershire councils in March. It will be built at historic Brabazon…

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BST, WOMAD and Rewind among latest cancellations

9 April 2020

AEG PRESENTS has cancelled its 65,000-capacity series of BST Hyde Park concerts in July, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is its second major London cancellation following the withdrawal of All Points East (cap. 40,000), due to take place 22–31 May in Victoria Park. While ticket-holders can claim refunds for…

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OVG reveals partners for Manchester arena

9 April 2020

OAK VIEW Group (OVG), the US company behind the plan for a new 23,500-capacity arena in Manchester, has filed a planning application to the city council, appointed Populous as principal architect and designer, and Royal BAM Group (BAM) as its construction partner. The £350 million venue, located next to Manchester City…

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Major venues join fight against COVID-19

9 April 2020

LONDON’S THE O2 (cap. 21,000) has become the latest major UK venue to operate as an NHS facility during the COVID-19 crisis. The AEG-owned venue will be used as an NHS educational training facility from 12 April to 29 June. Health service staff trained at the venue will go on…

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Festivals fall like dominoes as the Coronavirus continues to take toll

2 April 2020

WITH THE festival season fast approaching and the population quarantined for the foreseeable future, organisers of some of the country’s biggest summer events have been forced to follow Glastonbury (cap. 147,000) in canceling their events. Among the latest are Download (85,000), Isle of Wight Festival (70,000) and London’s All Points…

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Touts given jail sentences in ground-breaking prosecution

10 March 2020

TICKET TOUTS who resold hundreds of fraudulently obtained concert tickets at inflated prices have been jailed for a total of six-and-a-half years, marking the first successful prosecution against a resale business. Peter Hunter was sentenced to four years in prison, and David Smith to 30 months, after jurors at Leeds…

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OVG to submit plans for Manchester arena

10 March 2020

OAK VIEW Group (OVG), the US company behind the plan for a second arena in Manchester, is close to submitting a planning application to the city council. The company is hoping to build a 23,500-capacity arena in the Eithad Campus, the site of Manchester City football club’s Eithad Stadium (cap….

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Kilimanjaro backs merger of One Inch Badge and Rockfeedback

10 March 2020

REGIONAL PROMOTERS One Inch Badge and Rockfeedback are joining forces to launch new venture FORM, backed by Kilimanjaro Live. The two companies will operate as FORM Presents outside their local markets of Brighton (One Inch Badge) and London (Rockfeedback), where they will retain their established brand names. The combined entity…

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Music venues benefit from business rates reduction

10 March 2020

FOLLOWING THE Government’s announcement of a business rates reduction for high street retailers, which includes small and mid-sized venues across the UK from spring (see LIVE UK issue 241), more information has come to light on the criteria applicants must meet in order to be eligible. HM Treasury stated that…

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Vodafone to showcase new tech at SSE Hydro

10 March 2020

VODAFONE HAS partnered with The Scottish Event Campus (SEC), owners and operator of The SSE Hydro (cap. 14,300) arena in Glasgow, to sponsor a new “super suite” at the venue for the telecoms giant’s customers and guests during events. The company’s VeryMe customer loyalty app will also offer Vodafone users…

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Viagogo-StubHub merger complete but CMA continues its investigation

10 March 2020

CONTROVERSIAL RESALE website Viagogo has completed its £3.9 billion ($4.05bn) acquisition of StubHub from eBay, announced in December. However, the Initial Enforcement Order (IEC) issued by the Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) still prevents the companies from integrating the websites while it continues its preliminary investigation (see LIVE UK issue…

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Roundhouse names new head of music

10 March 2020

LONDON’S ROUNDHOUSE (cap. 3,100) has appointed Lucy Wood as the new head of music, who will join the venue from Festival Republic, where she led the music programme for Latitude Festival (cap. 35,000). Wood’s experience in the industry spans 15 years and includes roles at 19 Entertainment, Warp Records, and…

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