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All UK folkies take note - the law!!!

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Ian HP 14 Jul 01 - 06:02 AM
Kara 14 Jul 01 - 06:25 AM
GUEST,Knappo 14 Jul 01 - 07:57 AM
Malcolm Douglas 14 Jul 01 - 08:28 AM
Lanfranc 14 Jul 01 - 10:12 AM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 14 Jul 01 - 10:33 AM
Clinton Hammond 14 Jul 01 - 11:54 AM
Amos 14 Jul 01 - 11:58 AM
The Shambles 14 Jul 01 - 02:21 PM
The Shambles 14 Jul 01 - 02:24 PM
mouldy 15 Jul 01 - 03:19 AM
bill\sables 15 Jul 01 - 08:53 AM
The Shambles 16 Jul 01 - 10:11 AM
sian, west wales 16 Jul 01 - 10:48 AM
GUEST,JohnB 16 Jul 01 - 12:21 PM
Naemanson 16 Jul 01 - 12:21 PM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Jul 01 - 04:33 PM
The Cat's Whiskers 17 Jul 01 - 05:19 AM
GeorgeH 17 Jul 01 - 05:56 AM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jul 01 - 07:32 AM
Steveie1 17 Jul 01 - 08:02 AM
GeorgeH 17 Jul 01 - 08:43 AM
Roger in Sheffield 01 Sep 01 - 09:37 AM
Barry Finn 01 Sep 01 - 10:39 PM
The Shambles 02 Sep 01 - 02:18 AM
Roger in Sheffield 05 Sep 01 - 02:02 PM
The Shambles 05 Sep 01 - 02:53 PM
The Shambles 05 Sep 01 - 02:54 PM
The Shambles 05 Sep 01 - 06:40 PM
McGrath of Harlow 05 Sep 01 - 07:11 PM
The Shambles 05 Sep 01 - 07:30 PM
McGrath of Harlow 05 Sep 01 - 08:13 PM
Dave the Gnome 06 Sep 01 - 11:55 AM
Roger in Sheffield 06 Sep 01 - 04:46 PM
McGrath of Harlow 06 Sep 01 - 06:21 PM
Gareth 06 Sep 01 - 06:32 PM
Dave the Gnome 07 Sep 01 - 10:15 AM
Roger in Sheffield 07 Sep 01 - 11:25 AM
The Shambles 07 Sep 01 - 01:16 PM
GUEST,^gargoyle 08 Sep 01 - 12:01 AM
Roger in Sheffield 08 Sep 01 - 03:23 AM
The Shambles 08 Sep 01 - 06:31 AM
Gareth 08 Sep 01 - 06:45 AM
The Shambles 08 Sep 01 - 07:01 AM
Gareth 08 Sep 01 - 07:54 AM
Roger in Sheffield 09 Sep 01 - 05:32 AM
The Shambles 09 Sep 01 - 06:49 AM
Roger in Sheffield 09 Sep 01 - 09:14 AM
kendall 09 Sep 01 - 09:14 AM
Gareth 09 Sep 01 - 09:16 AM
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Subject: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Ian HP
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 06:02 AM

Here's a Press Release for the EFDSS day of action about the UK's ridiculous live music licensing laws. Please get involved if you can. The web link for those who want to get involved is http://www.efdss.org/livemusi.htm

LIVE MUSIC SOS - Day of Action (Thursday 19th July 2001)

Did you know that live music is barred from 95% of licensed premises?

Few people realise that it is a criminal offence (for the proprietor) if more than two musicians play together in licensed premises. This is known to musicians as the 'two-in-a-bar rule'.

Licensees who allow an acoustic folk session - for example, a jazz trio or string quartet - face fines of up to £20,000 and six months in prison. Local authorities, particularly in London, rigorously enforce the letter of the law. They also argue that case law from 1793 means that members of the public count as 'performers' if they join in!

The Government's proposed licensing reforms that would have allowed many more pubs, bars and restaurants to put on live events were dropped from the Queen's Speech. It could now be years before any change in this area of the law.

On Thursday 19th July The English Folk Dance and Song Society, with the endorsement of the Musicians Union, will back a Musicians' Day of Action, drawing attention to the draconian regulations that restrict live music in the UK.

Musicians believe that local authorities are riding roughshod over their human rights. Freedom of expression, covered by the Human Rights Act, applies to public performances, where there are no noise or safety issues. Local authorities should not interfere. Musicians in New York used this argument to overturn very similar laws there in 1988.

To have more than two musicians, a special permit called a public entertainment licence (PEL) must be bought from the local authority. But PELs are often expensive and subject to onerous conditions. Combined with heavy-handed local authority enforcement, this means that now only 5% of licensed premises hold annual PELs.

The Government issued an official warning to local authorities last year not to impose 'excessive' conditions on licensees, and that over-charging for PELs could be breaking the law. But to no effect. The same law outlaws dancing, but permits any amount of canned entertainment, 'recorded sound' or satellite TV. It is also illegal to combine live and 'recorded sound', and local authorities have successfully prosecuted landlords who allowed one musician to use backing tapes or minidiscs. Even Karaoke is illegal without a PEL.

It shocked the EFDSS to find that even organising a traditional musical event (in an unlicensed venue) in Britain could land them in prison for six months!

These rules are having a devastating effect - particularly on local folk clubs, many of whom have had to close, owing to enforcement by local councils. And hundreds of young jazz musicians, graduates of the new conservatoire jazz courses, cannot develop their art...

This is a situation which cannot go on, says Rupert Redesdale, Development Officer of EFDSS: "We really believe these laws are killing traditional music."

From 12.00 noon to 5 p.m. on Thursday 19 July, groups of roving musicians will visit participating pubs and bars in the London area. Musicians of all kinds will take part, using no amplification.

They will first ask licensees if they can perform. In accordance with the letter of the law, they will be politely told not to play, even for their own amusement. Of course, a performance by just two musicians is allowed or bands can play a recording of a performance (provided they don't mime that might be construed as dancing!).

Please join us for a Media Briefing Meeting along the way, in the cellar bar of the Red Lion, Whitehall at 2.00 p.m.

(It is likely that trumpeter Lord Colwyn, Chair of the Parliamentary Jazz Group will be thrown out and barred from the Red Lion for attempting to play jazz.).

Thereafter, at approx. 2.30 p.m., we will proceed to Downing Street - for a performance outside Number 10.

For more information, call Tim Walker at The English Folk Dance & Song Society, on 020 7284 0534, Rupert Redesdale on 07880 600133 (Tim's email address is tim.walker@efdss.org) or call Ray Hodges or Steve Barrett at HPS-Public Relations on 01494 684353 or 684314.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Kara
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 06:25 AM

Well this is just why I moved to France. And what with today being Bastille Day, There will be music played allover the country, and bars will be open until they feel like closing, if indead they do. But none of this was acheived with out cutting the King and Queens heads off, so you just have to decide where you priorities lie. Basicaaly I found that the laws inEnglandare made so that if a group of more that 3 people want to do anything, a law is passed to stop it. Here in France if you can get a group of people who want to do something, you form an assosiation and the gouvernment gives you a grant to get aon with it.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: GUEST,Knappo
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 07:57 AM

IanHP, I can't hardly belive they would make a law like that. Wish I could be there to march with guitar, flute, sax in hand to lend support but the "pond" is a bit too wide and I have but a small boat. Good luck! PLAY LOUD AND PROUD AND SCARE THE SHIT OUT OF 'EM!!! Tom Let us know how it goes.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 08:28 AM

The point is that they haven't made such a law; it's a very old one which really should be allowed to fall into disuse, as so many have; the main problem is that the law is, in some parts of the country, being enforced inappropriately.  From the point of view of Government, it's a small and unimportant thing, not worth devoting parliamentary time to; what we have to do is make it clear that they are mistaken in this assumption.

Of course, it isn't anything at all to do with having, or not having, a monarchy; the issue is historical rather than constitutional.  The last time we chopped a king's head off, it didn't make a great deal of difference.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Lanfranc
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 10:12 AM

"The law is a ass, a idiot!"

"Ignorantia legis haud excusat" (Ignorance of the law is no excuse).

Labor Novum omnia ruit! ( New Labour F***s up everything )

I'd be there - but on a Thursday?

Still, I'll see what can be done, I haven't felt so much like protesting about anything for years.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 10:33 AM

Glad it isn't one which passed on into the Colonies!

If we couldn't have musicians playing in the bars in Canada, it'd be such an awfully quiet place.

Hmmmm......


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 11:54 AM

How the hell do they have the man-power to enforce this stupidity?!?!?!


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Amos
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 11:58 AM

They recruit from the doles...


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 02:21 PM

See also Day of Action for live music 19th July.

Thank you Ian.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Jul 01 - 02:24 PM

Also Council Bans Morris


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: mouldy
Date: 15 Jul 01 - 03:19 AM

The above (Council bans Morris) seems to me to be related to the old South African ruling which says that more than 4 people gathered without prior permission from the police/relevant authority in a public place constitutes "Riotous Assembly". Jubilee Morris once got threatened with it, when they gathered to welcome Coventry Morris to SA, at Jan Smuts airport with a bit of a dance. After all, as a former colony, where did they get a lot of their laws from in the first place? - I was told yesterday of an old English law which shares a similar sentiment.

Unfortunately, as I was on a Morris Day at the time, I can't remember any more than that!!!We ended up at a pub where we played inside the pub, then there was dancing of some sort both inside and outside the building (in the road).

Andrea


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: bill\sables
Date: 15 Jul 01 - 08:53 AM

It seems to me that it is not only the musicians who are having a raw deal with this situation. The landlords of pubs must also stand to make a loss. I think I can speak for the Jug when about 25% of the weeks custom is on a Wednesday mucic night, and on the Yorkshire Gathering weekend we went through 9 barrels of beer. I am sure also that if it were not for folkweek in Whitby the publicans would have a much harder winter.
Would it not be an idea, therefore, to enlist the strength of the Licenced Victulers Association and even the breweries. Perhaps if they were on our side they could close the House of Commons bars till the issue is resolved in our favour, that would certainly provoke questions in the House.
Cheers Bill


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 10:11 AM

I'll drink to that!


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: sian, west wales
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 10:48 AM

I provide the secretariat for a Wales Rural Tourism Working Group so I've e-mailed the text of the Release to all members. Also to other select operatives ...

I'll have to think what we can do locally ... hmmmm...

sian


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: GUEST,JohnB
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 12:21 PM

Good Luck Guys, give Em Sh1t from me too. I would not know 95% of the songs I know if this had been around in my formative days. We were Morris dancing and singing English folk songs in a pub in Tottenham Ontario last Wednesday. It seems bloody stupid that you can not do that in England where the Traditions Originated. JohnB


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Naemanson
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 12:21 PM

Good luck and play your hearts out! I'm pulling for you! Please get that mess all cleared up before I come to visit. I want to hear and play music in a pub.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Jul 01 - 04:33 PM

It's stupid law, but like a lot of stupid laws, most of the time they get ignored. And of course you should break stupid laws on principle, it's the only way they get eroded or changed. And until they get changed they can always suddenly get reactuivated uin an arbitrary and ioppressive way. (Which in itself means they are probably illegal under human rights provisions.) So it's important to get them changed.

However the main threat to live music in pubs isn't the law, it's canned music. Especially when it's the tape behind the bar, not even a juke box. Now a law banning that without a special licence, I could sympathise with that.

Still, I'd remind the liberty loving Americans that at least you can get a legal drink in a pub here from the age of 18, which I understand isn't true in all places, even when you are American royalty. (Mind there are times I think it'd be brilliant if they raised the drinking age here to 30 or 40...)

?

Anyone going along to the London action on 19th? All my regular playmates are tied up with other things, it being a work day.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Cat's Whiskers
Date: 17 Jul 01 - 05:19 AM

RE: Stupid laws...

Isn't there still one that states every London hackney carrage should carry a bale of straw...??

TCW


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: GeorgeH
Date: 17 Jul 01 - 05:56 AM

While I agree with you about breaking stupid laws, McGrath, the problem with this one is that we have the fun but the landlord takes the (rather hefty) risk . .

The plans for the "day of action" made a good job of taking this into account . .

Sadly I guess I'll be at work on Thursday - but good luck to those who can participate . .

G.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jul 01 - 07:32 AM

Yeah, but it's only a risk if there's been a complaint, and the landlord's been warned about it, and persists, which most times never arises. It's a lot less than the risk involved in having a lock-in, which all good landlords seem to do from time to time.

If musicians told to stop playing in a pub moved outside and played on the pavement or whatsoever, I can't see that the landlord could be held responsible. I suppose if hey took their drink is outside a case could be made against him for serving them, going against his licence renewal, so we mighthave to play thirsty for a bit. But apart from that any law-breaking would be just down to the musicians.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Steveie1
Date: 17 Jul 01 - 08:02 AM

The 19th Acoustic Music Club in Elie - Fife meet on Thursday. I will make sure we all sing a song to make the point. Could this be construed as Direct Action?


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: GeorgeH
Date: 17 Jul 01 - 08:43 AM

Sorry to get picky here McGrath - but that ain't so . . There are many documented instances of landlords having been told that they need a Public Performance Licence to continue having Music in their pubs. In some cases the Licencing Authority has acknowledged that they were acting without any complaint being received. A number of folk clubs have closed as a result.

As for lock-ins - clearly there are few "good" landlords, then (but round here the music and the lock-ins may coincide but only alegedly, of course).

Your "take it outside" suggestion is true only if the musicians go far enough outside to be off the pub's property . . as evidenced in the recent "Council bans morris dancing" thread. And in any case that's then different laws that would be likely to be applied . .

G.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 01 Sep 01 - 09:37 AM

It would be a real help if anyone could email a reply to letters@dorsetecho.co.uk in response to the letter from Ian Locke (30th Aug) reproduced in this thread just scroll down a bit


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Barry Finn
Date: 01 Sep 01 - 10:39 PM

What happens when there's a large music festival does the council close their eyes & ears? I can't imagine a festival when their's no sessions (I'm not at all familar with UK festivals, hopefully some day I can change that). Barry


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 02 Sep 01 - 02:18 AM

There are two types. One that takes place mainly on an enclosed site which will be licensed, and one that takes place in a town, using pubs and other public buildings.

Fringe events like session occur and it would be fair to say that where many of the venues (official and unofficial) may have PELs, the councils (on the day)usually don't try to hard to be difficult.

Many of these are actually organised by some councils.

They vary. Our council does not understand much about folk music, others do.........


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 02:02 PM

any letters in the Echo?


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 02:53 PM

Hamish Birchill's letter appeared today 5th September.

It was an answer to Mr Locke's. I will see if I put it here...

Watch this space.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 02:54 PM

Hamish Birchall's letter appeared today 5th September.

It was an answer to Mr Locke's. I will see if I put it here...

Watch this space.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 06:40 PM

Spot the difference.... There is one.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 07:11 PM

I've found this site FAX Your MP, and I've just send him this letter which should be in his in-tray tomorrow. I suggest other people do this. It only takes the time to write the letter, and doesn't even cost a postage stamp.

Dear Bill Rammell

I am writing to ask you to do what you can to end the situation in which the law discriminates against people who wish to meet and make music or sing in public places, such as cafes or public houses, by requiring that Public Entertainment Licences should be obtained.

Traditionally this kind of social activity has always happened, folk musicians meeting for sessions, Trad jazz played in the bar, singing round the piano. This has rightly been recognised in practice as a form of social activity, no different in principle from people playing darts matches or talking about football when they meet together.

However many councils appear to be interpreting their obligations under the 1982 Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act as requiring that they treat people taking part in such activities as taking part in a public entertainment performance. This means a PEL must be obtained.

In the case of public houses there is an exemption, if there are only two performers. This means that if a third person joins in singing the chorus, for example, the exemption ceases to apply. In the case of anybody singing or playing in any other public place, such as a cafe, there is no exemption even for a single \"performer\".

This is clearly absurd, and is also in clear breach of Section 10 of the Human Rights Act, which guarantees our right to expression.

Like many absurd laws its impact is mitigated by the fact that sensible local authorities apply them with discretion. However this does not always apply, and there have been a number of recent cases where the law has been applied in a way that has been oppressive.

I enjoy taking part in a number of such folk music sessions in pubs within the surrounding area. One of them was a monthly session in the Welsh Harp in Waltham Abbey, next to the Abbey Church. It was, rather unusually, devoted primarily to English tunes (rather than Irish or Scots or American etc - though in practice all kinds of music would end up being played). We played the music, quite a few of the regulars tended to sit over by the TV and watch the match. We were there primarily to entertain each other, not to entertain an audience, and we were not paid.

However this session ceased a few month ago, because the local council insisted that it could not continue without a Public Entertainment Licence being obtained. In common with 95% of pubs in this country, the Welsh Harp did not have such a licence. Reasonably enough the landlord did not see it worth while to go to the trouble and not insignificant expense involved in obtaining one, just for out benefit.

This is just an example which happens to have happened locally. Elsewhere in the country there have been cases where a publican was fined for allowing people to join in singing happy birthday when the two exempted performers struck up the tune. In Weymouth when a pub obtained a PEL it prohibited it from allowing Morris Dancers to perform there except on one day.

For far more information about this than I can give you here, I suggest that you have a look through this web site about \"Session Harassment\" - http://www.freenetpages.co.uk/hp/trg/SCoFF/session.htm#july2001 or this one by the Campaign for Live Music, http://www.tradmusic.net/calm.html

There are many other injustices in the world which are more pressing. But it does represent a real injustice, and is stops people enjoying themselves in a harmless and beneficial activity.

Moreover, since the issue is now fairly actively discussed, especially among people who value folk music and traditional music and dance, both in this country and abroad, and it is also starting to affect tourism, and I anticipate that this could rapidly mushroom.

Through the Internet I know that Americans who enjoy folk music are starting to cross England off their list for holidays. After all, this kind of restriction doesn\'t exist in many other countries, and would not be tolerated. And people have said that going to a country where this kind of restriction is in existence is distasteful in itself.

Moreover this whole thing is damaging to our dignity as a nation, and to our ability to preserve and regenerate our popular traditions. It is cultural vandalism. And it seems that nobody in politics cares about it.

Yours sincerely,

Kevin McGrath

I'll let you know if anything comes of it.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 07:30 PM

That is a good site Kevin, thanks. it make the whole process very simple and has some good information too.

Good letter too. My turn to be pedantic, it is Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 08:13 PM

Spotted the deliberate mistake to make sure you were concentrating...

No, accidental mistake I'm afraid, though I knew that really.. But it's in the Schedule to the Act as Section 10 anyway. (It's all in Trevor Gilsen's excellent site on Session Harassment.)

Any sign of that legal article Richard Bridge was getting hold of?


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 06 Sep 01 - 11:55 AM

The PEL isn't the only issue either - There is also the PRS. We have just been 'hit' for 500 quids worth of PRS 'license' which, unless we can manage to raise it from increased door charges, will close our club. Does anyone else find it strange that an organisation who's motto is 'Keep music live' could do so much towards closing live venues?

Whereas the PEL is at least on the 'statute books' the PRS are a self appointed body apparantly dedicated to taking money from poor clubs and giving it to rich copyright owners like Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson. A sort of modern day Robin Hood in reverse!

Ah well - of my chest now.

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 06 Sep 01 - 04:46 PM

The last reply I received after emailing Tom Grainger is the one below.

I think your email is based on a false premise. The issue has never been that the Thursday sessions themselves make too much noise or pose a threat to health & safety. The test for whether a PEL is needed is only does entertainment take place. If so, and unless there is a specific exemption, eg less than 3 people performing, a PEL is needed. It is not a matter of Council policy. The circumstances in which the entertainment takes place at the Cove, ie almost every week, means we have no discretion.

It is for this reason I have suggested to various people that we would be better seeking evidence to show the law is having an unfortunate and unintended side effect. I have no wish for anyone to be 'shopped', although I would hope all licensees would operate within the law. What I would be interested to hear of is any landlord who has stopped allowing sessions to be held, because of the need for a PEL.

I then contacted him again with this:
You seem to be saying that the purpose is not as Ian Locke detailed in the Echo.
Just that the legislation is there and so you feel obliged to apply it even when you admit it is inappropriate.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Would you mind if I published your replies?

I didn't receive a reply to say I should not


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Sep 01 - 06:21 PM

re Dave the Gnome's last post. Surely it's the Musicians Union that has the motto is 'Keep music live'? And it seems to live up to it, and is sympoatetoc be supportive in such matters.

The PRS motto is 'Helping Music Grow' - which of course is often the last thing it does. And it's a regsutered Charity at that!

The PRS thing is a separate issue, and an important one at that. Maybe a separate thread about it would be a better way to try to open it up - this PEL stuff is quite complicated enough.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Sep 01 - 06:32 PM

Sorry I'am a bit knakkered tonite but with luck the Doreset Echo letters page will be on the net by Saturday Noon.

BTW I'am having a beer or two with our MP tomorrow night - watch this space.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 Sep 01 - 10:15 AM

Sorry Kevin - you are quite right. Funnily enough I saw an MU sticker on a guitar case last night and thought "Oh bugger - wrong again!"

Don't know what sympoatetoc is though. The cats eaten the dictionary...;-)

I am about to raise the PRS issue on a seperate thread as suggested as well - good idea.

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 07 Sep 01 - 11:25 AM

Today's reply from TG

I can't see any disagreement or inconsistency in my reply with Ian Locke's recent letter. As I recall Ian was pointing out that the reasons for PELs (ie the justification for the legislation) was primarily health& saftey/ noise. (Indeed I referred to this in a previous email). What I have said is that irrespective of whether we believe there are particular Health & safety or noise concerns with a particular premise, the trigger for a requirement for a PEL is the taking place of entertainment. By itself, that doesn't make a PEL inappropriate.

Thank you for asking for agreement to publish my replies. I have no objections. After all I think our aims are similar - to ensure musicians interests are not unreasonably curtailed


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Sep 01 - 01:16 PM

SIGH!


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: GUEST,^gargoyle
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 12:01 AM

Thank you Mr. sheffield:

I have written a "hard-copy" (aka typed) express international delivery letter.

This is my second responce to "Your Situation" if...you had not renewed the thread I would not have been aware of omitting a key argument in favor of enforcment of "the letter-of-thelaw."

Sincerely,
Gargoyle
your Yankee Tory


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 03:23 AM

I would like to read your point of view Mr G
Over here Torys hate wasteful public spending so I think in the main they would want the legislation changed, I don't think many taxpayers would see stopping a few people singing as a valuable public service

hope you remembered to put your name on that letter, they might not take Gargoyle seriously


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 06:31 AM

Is there anyone who can explain to me, what exactly Mr Grainger was trying to say, in his last reply to Roger (in Sheffield), above?

I would be most grateful, if you could?

"After all I think our aims are similar - to ensure musicians interests are not unreasonably curtailed"

This is from the Chief Executive of the council who has "cutailed" musicians and the public's interests and threatened legal action against a licensee for holding a session.

Where they now admit that this presented no noise of safety concerns.

And he continues to justify this action?????????????

PLEASE HELP!


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Gareth
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 06:45 AM

Shambles - little known aspect of UK public administration. You can ask to see letters, petitions etc. submitted to a council on planning and licencing matters.

This might be an opportunity to unmask the gargoyle, which would be a nice return favour to Mudcatters.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 07:01 AM

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council

Copied to the local paper. letters@dorsetecho.co.uk

To all UK Folkies who may (understandably) not wish their own councils to pay their events, the same attention and are reluctant to get involved.

Would you please join with the many UK folkies who have, and in particlar with those overseas to help win this BATTLE here in Weymouth and Portland?

We did not choose to fight this battle but we cannot afford to loose it.

A victory here will ensure that a clear signal will go out to all local authorities and make it impossible for similar action to ever take place again.

We have lost too many fine events already and cannot afford to loose here, as this will mean that the situation will continue..........THERE WILL NEVER BE A BETTER OPPORTUNITY TO CHANGE THIS AND SEND A VERY CLEAR MESSAGE.

The message that they are currently receiving is that they can do exactly as they please and the vast majority of people, UK folkies, directly affected and who should care, do not care enough to stop them...........

PLEASE HELP!


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Gareth
Date: 08 Sep 01 - 07:54 AM

The letters pages of the Dorset Echo are repruduced on the WEB

The JPG's take some time to load so I have now slipt then onto different pages.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 05:32 AM

Shambles I think the Chief Executive would like this resolved too. There is legislation to implement, his council does so. We have to get the politicians to remove the legislation and see the benefits of local sessions. We can't do it alone though.


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: The Shambles
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 06:49 AM

Roger

Are you now conviced by his arguments?

With the greatest of respect. There have always been two strands to this. Legislation and the interpretation of it.

What ever the new legislation may be, it will still be local authorities that will enforce it, as they see it locally. We have to force them to change their age-old attitudes if the new is not to be worse than the old.

Mr Grainger has it in his power to change their interpretation locally, NOW.

He chooses to do nothing, and claim that it does not threaten local traditional events, the nature of which he still does not understand and HIDE behind and blame the legislation. Please don't swallow this line?

It matters not and I don't really care what his personal view is, and I think having tried to reason with him face to face, I know what that is.

They have done all this, without the slightest concern for the effect for the things we love. Of course he wants it resolved NOW. For thanks to all of our efforts, they are now exposed and out in the open.

If he seriously wants it resovled, it is in his power now.

We just have to keep them there in the spotlight, still attempting to justify what cannot be justified.

The prevention of the Human Right of freedom of expression, where there are no (safety, as they have now admitted) grounds to do so


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 09:14 AM

To politicians and councillors sessions are invisible
The best way to explain something they cannot understand is to show them what these sessions are
.........but do we trust them enough to see sense or will they demand to see the landlords PEL on the spot?
My MP is supposed to be following this matter up and it should be the easiest thing in the world to take him along to a session and let him see the light - but would the landlord and session members ever talk to me again for revealing their 'secret' session?

As for TG I think he is unwilling to back down on this but very willing for us to get the legislation changed
If you have any short questions that I can put to him I will be happy to do so, he doesn't seem to answer everything though, so perhaps just one important point at a time so he can't (hopefully)avoid it
I am not sure he has ever admitted if the legislation is open to interpretation, do we have any concrete evidence that it is, something he can't dispute
Roger


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: kendall
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 09:14 AM

I wonder what the Magna Carta would look like with a Bill of Rights attached?


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Subject: RE: All UK folkies take note - the law!!!
From: Gareth
Date: 09 Sep 01 - 09:16 AM

At the risk of boreing catters to tears the problems of interpretation of the Public Entertainment Licencese have now attracted the attention of "Stage" weekly news paper.

All press coverage can be found here.

PRESS COVERAGE

Iam sorry if they take a little time to load but much of this is JPG files.

Gareth


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