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Affected by The Licensing Act 2003

The Shambles 20 Apr 07 - 03:15 PM
Richard Atkins 17 Apr 07 - 08:43 PM
The Shambles 16 Apr 07 - 12:04 PM
DMcG 16 Apr 07 - 08:03 AM
Snuffy 16 Apr 07 - 07:10 AM
The Shambles 16 Apr 07 - 04:20 AM
The Shambles 14 Apr 07 - 04:25 PM
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Folkiedave 12 Apr 07 - 04:49 AM
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Don(Wyziwyg)T 05 Apr 07 - 06:11 PM
Mr Happy 05 Apr 07 - 11:43 AM
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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Apr 07 - 03:15 PM

The following from Hamish Birchall.

'Roots', a song by the successful folk duo 'Show of Hands', last week reached no.1 in the HMV download folk chart. It is currently at no.2:

http://www.hmvdigital.com/HMV.Digital.WebStore.Portal/default.aspx

The song, celebrating English identity and musical heritage, was written in response to Kim Howells' notorious claim that Somerset folk singers were his idea of hell - a claim made while he was a culture minister and responsible for publishing the then Licensing Bill in November 2002. The lyrics allude to the loss of the exemption for one or two musicians as against the continued exemption for big screen entertainment:

'... pubs where no one ever sings at all / and everyone stares at a great big screen / overpaid soccer stars, prancing teens / Australian soap, American rap / Estuary English, baseball cap...'

The key licensing connection was missed in an otherwise informative article 'West Country folk storms iTunes' by Alex Hannaford in last Wednesday's Independent (18 April 2007). Hannaford does, however, partially explain the Howells' connection: http://enjoyment.independent.co.uk/music/features/article2459288.ece

Link to Show of Hands website, which includes links to HMV, iTunes, emusic and Napster download sites:http://www.showofhands.co.uk/
http://www.showofhands.co.uk/
Posted 11 May 2007:
    The following from Hamish Birchall.

    The licensing article by me below, published in latest 'Classical Music' magazine, summarises my take on the impact of the Licensing Act on live music.

    Some of the material may be familiar, but it also includes quotes from the shadow secretaries of state for culture, a leading licensing lawyer, the Director of Communications at the Royal College of Music, the Chief Executive of the National Operatic and Dramatic Association, and a professional statistician on the Musicians Union research into the impact of the legislation.

    My apologies to all those who generously provided quotes that I did not use - this was due to constraints of space.

    Unfortunately Classical Music is not published online, but there is information about the publication here:
    http://www.rhinegold.co.uk/magazines/cm/index.cfm

    ~ ~ ~

    Eighteen months after the controversial new Licensing Act came into force, is it a story of success or a shambles? Hamish Birchall takes some soundings


    'Get your act together'
    Copyright Hamish Birchall 2007



    The Licensing Act has been in force for about 18 months - a reasonable time, one would think, in which to evaluate its initial impact on live music. What is the verdict?

    'Encouraging', according to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). Last December it announced the findings of MORI research into the impact of the act on 'smaller venues' (Licensing Act 2003: The experience of smaller establishments in applying for live music authorisation can be read in full at www.culture.gov.uk by following the links through reference library, research, research by dcms, live music in england and wales).

    In the report, 60% of 2,101 venues surveyed claimed to have a live music authorisation. In fact most of these venues would have been lawfully entitled to put on some live music under the old regime, whether using the two-musician exemption, or because the venue didn't need an entertainment licence. The downside, not mentioned in the DCMS press release, was that 40% had lost any automatic entitlement to live music. If they wanted it in future, they would have to apply for a Temporary Event Notice (TEN), costing £21, up to a maximum of 12 per year per venue.

    In March this year, the Musicians' Union published the findings of its 2006 State of the Nation survey, which included a section about the impact of licensing. It reported that 643 respondents, about 30% of their sample of 2,085, felt that the Licensing Act had been bad for live music, and about half of these claimed it had had negative effect on their work.

    Although headlined 'Survey Success', the research methodology and interpretation have attracted strong criticism. Problems include the self-selecting sample; the low sample size, less than 7% of the 31,000 membership; the apparent lack of adjustment for the over-representation of classical performers (30% in the survey sample, but about 12% of the membership); and the very small sample sizes available for the follow-up work necessary to establish a link, if any, between a rise or fall in gig venues and the new licensing regime.

    Alison Macfarlane, a professional statistician based at City University, London, also a folk musician, commented: 'Given its low response, lack of investigation of response bias and poor question design, this survey is totally unreliable as a source of information on the state of music in general or on the impact of the Licensing Act in particular. If this has been funded out of members subscriptions, we should be asking for a refund.'

    Despite these serious concerns, licensing minister Shaun Woodward has already used the research to buttress the government's licensing policy. In response to a question about the impact of the legislation on live music in the House of Commons on 5 March, he said: 'Current evidence is anecdotal, but it none the less suggests a broadly neutral impact.'

    Only the MU survey provided 'anecdotal evidence'. The MORI survey of 2006 did not measure the health of live music, focusing instead on live music authorisations and applicants' experience of licensing.

    The minister also said of the new regime: 'The additional bonus is that local residents, who were seriously affected in the past by live music, now have a say, which is important.' But the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, the source for most government noise complaint data, has since confirmed that it is not aware of any statistics or research that distinguish between complaints about recorded and live music.

    While some already established music venues save money as a result of the new centrally-set licence fees, during 2006 a small number of verifiable reports emerged of bars and restaurants cancelling or postponing live jazz that had been provided under the old two-performer exemption.

    In April 2006 the Better Regulation Commission published a report into the act's implementation. It strongly criticised the hidden costs and bureaucracy. This often included preparation of scale plans and advertisement in the local press – both usually necessary where a venue made an application for live music. It also criticised uncertainty over the 'incidental music' exemption, which had already led to wide disparities of interpretation by local authorities.

    The City of London Corporation, for example, early in 2006 allowed Barts Hospital to host publicly advertised performances on wards by well-known performers under the exemption. By contrast, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea treated similar performances at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital as licensable. Indeed, the hospital for the first time had to pay a £635 licence application fee, plus annual fees of £350, plus the costs of advertising the application in the local press.

    The new regime has also caused problems for amateur theatre and opera. Mark Pemberton, chief executive of the National Operatic and Dramatic Association,says: 'The Licensing Act has proved disastrous for those amateur theatre groups who perform in village, school or community halls and rely on Temporary Event Notices. Because TENs are restricted to 96 hours, these groups have had to reduce their performance run from five or six evenings to just four evenings, reducing both their box office income and employment opportunities for professional musicians.

    'Other groups have found that while the hall will have an entertainment licence, it will have chosen not to have an alcohol licence to save on costs. This has led to the absurd situation that the amateur theatre group can perform on five or six evenings, but only sell interval drinks on four of them.'

    Buskers have been caught up in licensing, despite previous DCMS assurances that busking would not be licensable. Manchester City Council, Test Valley Borough Council, and West Dorset District Council have all recently made clear their view that busking is licensable under the new act and that they will not change their position unless and until the government changes the law.

    Unsurprisingly, the legislation is widely seen as confusing and harmful. Sue Sturrock, director of communications at the Royal College of Music says: 'The confusion caused by this licensing act is further evidence of the government's inability to think and act coherently across the patch. For example, it recognises the benefits of participation in music for young children, while doing little to encourage it in a systematic, sustained way.

    'Naturally, those of us involved in training musicians are concerned about this licensing act, as we are about any proposal that reduces opportunities for live performance. This is about far more than protecting musicians' livelihoods. The benefits of live music, both for participants and listeners, are well documented: it's generally a catalyst for good. Live performance can changes lives. The government should acknowledge this, and bring forward legislation that celebrates and builds on that truth, rather than undermining it.'

    Leading licensing lawyers agree that the law needs to be changed. Simon Mehigan, a licensing QC and co-editor of Patersons Licensing Acts, says: 'Many event organisers probably still do not appreciate the full extent of entertainment licensing requirements under the new regime. Many performances which used to be exempt under the old regime are now caught, such as private concerts raising money for charity or good causes. The distinction between licensable public performances and exempt private performances is often unclear.

    'The "incidental music" exemption is open to wide interpretation by local authorities. For many small scale performances entertainment licensing, in a civilised society, should be completely unnecessary, particularly when set against the blanket exemption for big screen entertainment such as satellite broadcasts of football matches in pubs'.

    DCMS has proposed draft changes to the statutory licensing guidance that accompanies the act which, if approved, would become law sometime this summer. This does not satisfy Simon Mehigan, however: 'DCMS has responded with a proposed clarification of what constitutes "incidental music" within the statutory licensing guidance. As currently worded this might help buskers and carol singers to some extent. But as a licensing lawyer I would prefer to see clarification within the act itself to ensure proportionality and consistency in its enforcement by local authorities.'

    The government is clearly under pressure. Shadow culture minister Anne Milton MP summarised the Conservative position: 'The government's new regulations surrounding entertainment are a shambles. They need to admit they've made a mistake and sort the mess out. If we are elected to government one of our priorities will be to re-look at the legislation and try to make sure that live music doesn't suffer from ill-thought-out regulations'

    In 2004 the DCMS set up the Live Music Forum, chaired by Feargal Sharkey, 'to take forward the ministerial commitment to maximise the take-up of reforms in the Licensing Act 2003 relating to the performance of live music, to monitor the impact of the act on live music, and to promote live music performance. It comprises representatives from across the industry and non-commercial sectors, as well as local government and the hospitality industry'.

    The Live Music Forum report into the impact of the Licensing Act on live music is expected this June. Commenting ahead of publication, the Liberal Democrat shadow culture, media and sport secretary Don Foster MP said: 'The music industry's fears about the licensing laws appear to have been justified. Now the government must show they appreciate that music matters by taking the recommendations of the upcoming Live Music Forum report very seriously'.

    There is a petition on the Number 10 website calling on the prime minister to recognise that the new regulations have damaged music and dance and to take steps to remedy the situation http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/licensing/. At the time of writing, almost 72,000 have already signed, and it remains open for signature until 11 June. The government would do well to listen.

    The unequal treatment of live music and big-screen entertainment has now entered popular folklore. Last month a song called Roots by the successful folk duo Show of Hands stormed the download charts, reaching no 1 on HMV's folk download site. The lyrics paint a bleak picture of a future without singing in bars but with the continued exemption for big-screen broadcast entertainment: '... pubs where no one ever sings at all / and everyone stares at a great big screen / overpaid soccer stars, prancing teens / Australian soap, American rap / Estuary English, baseball cap...'

    ENDS

    Thread closed because it's been a target for a heavy barrage of Spam/repetitive messages.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Richard Atkins
Date: 17 Apr 07 - 08:43 PM

Your Thread stick to it and dont Troll Others.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 16 Apr 07 - 12:04 PM

As lots of venues now demand this (as well as risk assesment etc), anyone performing regularly will probably already have it.

I'm not sure that the average busker would (as most of their venues would not have required it).

But as with many of this schemes other conditions - much is duplication of other existing Health & Safety stuff and the rest is basic common sense.

The controls that remain are more questionable in intent. The important aspect is that they are all additional restrictions and requirements to the conditions of the issued Premises Licence and limited in the legislation governing this.

The point being that the Act's whole concept falls down when those applying for Premises Licence entertainment are less interested in providing Regulated Entertainment than they are in finding ways to place futher restrictions on it.

Those restrictions already provided by the legislation are bad enough without councils (and other organisations) finding wonderful ways of imposing more by becoming in effect the licensee instead of just the licensing authority.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: DMcG
Date: 16 Apr 07 - 08:03 AM

Add membership of EFDSS to Snuffy's list: it includes £5m public liability insurance. So the direct answer to Shambles' question is £33 per annum at most.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Snuffy
Date: 16 Apr 07 - 07:10 AM

Your subscription to organisations like Musicians' Union, Morris Ring etc usually includes at least £2m public liability cover.

As lots of venues now demand this (as well as risk assesment etc), anyone performing regularly will probably already have it.

It's only the informal groups and one-offs like carol singers etc who will really be affected by these requirements, but then they would not really want a full year's permit anyway, and would presumably apply for a TEN.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 16 Apr 07 - 04:20 AM

All performers must have Public Liability Insurance to a minimum value of £2 million.

Does anyone know what this first requirement would cost?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Apr 07 - 04:25 PM

Licence holders must ensure that the area is kept tidy at all times and that if litter is generated; it is removed at the end of the performance.

Seems as if the Council plan to save money on street cleaning.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 14 Apr 07 - 08:36 AM

The following is the small print.

Street Performing Permits
c/o Community Enabling Division
West Dorset District Council
Stratton House
58-60 High West Street
Dorchester
DT1 1UZ
13 April 2007


I am pleased to inform you that Dorchester Chamber of Commerce has now been granted a Premises Licence for South Street, Dorchester (please see enclosed map).

We are now formalising the licensing of Street Entertainers and Buskers who wish to perform in Dorchester, and an application form for the permit is enclosed for your attention.

The Terms and Conditions outline the compliance criteria to ensure the enjoyment and safety of residents and visitors to Dorchester.

On receipt of your application and £10 and administration fee, this will be appraised and subject to compliance with the terms and conditions a permit will be issued. The permit will need to be carried at all times and shown to compliance officers on request.

We look forward to welcoming you in the town to entertain our residents and visitors during 2007.

If you have any queries, please call us on 01305 252 250.

Yours sincerely

Jude Allen
Cultural Development Officer
West Dorset District Council
ENDS

The application form requires the following documents.

Parental/guardian consent if under 16
Signed agreement of terms and conditions
2 passport size photographs for licence document
Risk Assessment giving full details of how the performance will be delivered with consideration to all current health & safety requirements.
Cheque for £10 payable to Dorchester Chamber of Commerce

Busking & Street Performers Terms & Conditions

1.         Health & Safety
1.1       All performers must have Public Liability Insurance to a minimum value of £2
            million.   
1.2       All performers must provide a risk assessment for their activity.
1.3       It is the responsibility of the performer to advise the Chamber of Commerce of   
            any changes in the performance that would affect the Risk Assessment or Public
            Liability Insurance.
1.4       Performances should not contain anything that might place a person or property
            at risk of harm or damage. Performers must consider, and take responsibility
            for public safety at all times in the delivery of their performance.

2.         Noise
2.1       We actively discourage the use of a PA or other amplified systems associated with
            a performance. Where such systems are used they must comply with Health &
            Safety requirements to include PAT testing.
2.2       Noise from any street performance should not be greater than reasonable
               background noise when heard from more than 30 metres (horizontal or vertical)
            from where the performance is taking place.
2.3       The volume must be turned down immediately if requested by a council or police
            officer.

3.         Collection of money
3.1       The principal of street entertainment and busking is for the public to voluntarily
            donate money as part of the performance; therefore under no circumstances must
            an approach be made to the general public to encourage them to donate money.
3.2       If collecting money for a charity, a Street Collection licence must be obtained
            from the West Dorset District Council through the Licensing Department,
            (01305 252441). In no other circumstances should a street entertainer on behalf
            Of a charity, cause, organisation or group.

4.         General
4.1       The Licence must be retained by the performer at all times whilst on site, and
            presented to a council officer on request.
4.2       No busker or street entertainer has the sole right to any pitch and if a site is
            required by more than one busker or street entertainer, there must be rotation
            every 45 minutes.
4.3       A break in the music of 15 minutes must be provided every 45 minutes in any
            playing session.
4.4       Licence holders must ensure that the area is kept tidy at all times and that if
            litter is generated; it is removed at the end of the performance.
4.5       Performers must not cause any congestion outside shop frontages or public
            walkways. If congestion occurs, the performer must stop the show and
            politely ask the general public to move away from the congested area.
4..6      Under no circumstances will generators be allowed on site.
4.7       Performers may sell CD's as part of their Busking Act, however if it is
            felt that a performer is there solely to sell his goods, the licence will be
            revoked immediately. This condition is an interim measure and
            Dorchester Chamber of Commerce reserves the right to withdraw this
            option at any time entirely without notice if they so wish to do. If an
            applicant is under the age of 16, written consent must be provided by a
            parent/guardian.
4.8       No performances may be given by a performer whilst under the influence
            of any intoxicating substance.
4.9       Performers must ensure that the content of their performance does not
            cause offence to members of the public, and appeals to a wide range of
            People including children, families and the older generation.
4.10    The Dorchester Chamber of Commerce has the right to terminate the licence
            at any time without liability or penalty. Failure to comply with these conditions
            will result in the licence being revoked.
4.11    The licence will be valid until the 31st March 2008, when the licence must be
            renewed.
4.12    No vehicles will be permitted on the site at any time.
4.13    No fly posting is permitted in the West Dorset district Council area.

5.         Standards of performance.
            The Dorchester Chamber of Commerce is committed to offering the best variety
            and quality of busking and street entertainment. Therefore, the following basic
            requirements will be considered in issuing and revoking the street entertainer and
            busking licence:
5.1       Musical Performances.
5.1.1    There must be sufficient variety in the performances i.e. no repetition of material
            within a 45 minute set.
5.1.2    There must be an acceptable degree of musical competence i.e. the performance
            must be melodic and in tune.
5.1.3    Single tone rhythmic performances are not acceptable.

5.2      Street Entertainers
5.2.1   Performers are required to be skilled and experienced in using the props of their
          Performance. They must also have an understanding of, and a commitment to   
          safety for the public, themselves and the environment.
5.2.2   The use of fire in a performance is not permitted e.g. juggling, fire, eating/
          breathing.
ENDS

The presumption of entertainment permission for regulated entetainment contained in the Act, is that the applicant wishes to provide some.

It is clear from the conditions - that Dorchester Chamber of Commerce (as licence holders)would not mind too much if as a result of their application and this scheme - that no busking took place at all (as long as carol singing and the usual fund raising events were not affected).

Applications like this are applied for and granted - not in order to provide and encourage all forms of regulated entertainment but in order to enable some events, but to be able to place more restrictive conditions upon others.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Apr 07 - 08:04 AM

The Advertiser
Weymouth, Dorchester and Portland

Friday April 13

That sounds better already


Dorchester town centre looks set to become filled with the sound of music thanks to a new agreement. West Dorset District Council has joined forces with the county town's Chamber of Commerce to ensure street performers are properly licensed.

Musicians, jugglers and other artists can now entertain shoppers in South Street for just £10 a year.

The new reduced rate has been made available because the Chamber of Commerce has taken our a premises licence covering the whole of the shopping street.

Individual licences for entertainers normally cost £100 a year or £21 a day.

Local musician Mike Manning said he was delighted with the news.
"There is a great atmosphere in Dorchester and entertaining the crowds is a pleasure," he said.

"I am please that I'll be able to perform for just £10 a year and would encourage other artists to join the scheme".

Alistair Chisholm, president of the Chamber of Commerce, called the move a 'very exciting initiative'. He sad: It's great we're working hand in hand with the district council to encourage street performers, they enliven the town centre and make it a more vibrant place to be.

"Licensing street performers should hopefully encourage the quality to go up. We're eager to encourage really top-notch local performers to come and entertain the crowds. Encouraging street artists will increase the feel good factor in Dorchester, which is the way forward".

The district council is piloting the scheme in the county town, and hopes to extend it to other West Dorset towns if it proves successful. Cultural development officer Jude Allen added said the district council is keen to attract 'first-rate' street performers to Dorchester.

Entertainers wishing to join the scheme should contact Jude Allen on 01305 251 010.
ENDS

Mr Manning (who previous to this was once able to busk in South Steet for free) does not appear to see the references to encouraging the quality to go up or to fist rate performers to be a slight.........

But the concept of a third party (The local Chamber of Commerce) applying and being given Premises Licence Entertainment permission for land they do not own (for a year?) - is an intersting one. But as the person to contact is a council officer, the scheme still seems to be under the contol of the district council.

Perhaps - before all our local councils grant themselves permission and full control over these public spaces - other groups could form to apply for similar things?

It is not likely to happen to the public spaces in Weymouth and Portland however - for any applicant would be in competition with the current licence holder who is now also the Licensing Authority.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Apr 07 - 07:01 AM

Letter (from me) published in the Dorset Echo April 12 2007.

Red tape coup- or purple prose?

Cutting licensing red tape? In response to the Echo front page article of April 3, I have to say that the story and the page 8 comment piece make many assumptions.

Where is there any evidence provided that the Department of Media and Sport (DCMS) hold Weymouth and Portland Council as a shining example of how to cut red tape?

Where is there any mention that this red tape - which made life difficult for our traditional Punch and Judy shows - was only recently introduced by the DCMS in their own reform, The Licensing Act 2003?

Why does the Page 8 comment assume that now having to obtain free entertainment permission from the council for every event must be less arduous and time-consuming and costly (for the council) than individuals paying the same council for permission for every event on these spaces?

And as regulated entertainment permission has already been granted for these spaces, why would anyone need to fill in application forms for additional permission, as such permission can hardly be refused by employees of the same authority that granted it?

Can it? And as it looks as if all the activities on these sites only have permission up to 8pm. The activities are already rather limited by this built-in red tape.

I and many others would welcome all real attempts to cut red tape, but perhaps we should more closely examine such claims before rushing to praise the spin.

I do not doubt Councillor Manning's good intentions, and it would be nice if this could be seen as a move towards less control.

But the reality is that for the DCMS this is purely damage limitation - to try and get them off the hook for only recently extending licensing requirements to practically everywhere.
ENDS


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 13 Apr 07 - 06:51 AM

Not as absurd as the interpretations used by your Council (such as the example discussed) which you support only because it suits your sort term interests - not because it would be supported in court.

The danger of this is that if or when they later use an equally absurd interpretation that may damage your interests - you rather have to support that also. For you can then hardly expect or rely on this same legislation to protect your interests.

The Licensing Act 2003 is the same everywhere in England and Wales and everyone's interests must be affected by it equally - where the interpretations used are defended as being a requirement of this legislation.

Or if I do ever manage to get my local authority to follow the words of the Act and this proves favorable to our joint interests - would you not expect your Council to have to follow suit?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 12 Apr 07 - 04:49 AM

Roger, I got the impression you were asking for examples of how councils treated live music and I gave you one. Maybe I was wrong but frankly I couldn´t be bothered searching through all your posts to find chapter and verse of your request.

Sheffield City Council also licenced the whole of the inner city area for regulated entertainment.

I have spent dozens of hours writing emails and letters, had a number of newspaper articles based on the absurdities of this act published in the local press. I have appeared on local radio pointing out the absurdities of the Act.

As far as I am concerned my campaigning was a bit controntational but now it seems to me that the local council is behaving sensibly.

I wish that other councils did the same but I am not going to criticise my local council for finding reasons for music and traditions to go ahead.

That would be absurd.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 02:44 PM

Sheffield City Council regard the singing and (playing on the piano)of carols as part of a religious service when taking place at Xmas time.

Yes - I have attended many such religious services in pubs.

I and others could try that one with our councils. I very much doubt if they would consider it. My council might - if this religious service involved pool tables and dart boards.

I wonder - if it were challenged - if any court would agree with the officers of your council that the legisation was being correctly followed by this bit of tomfoolery?

The point being that some of our council's officer really think that the law does enable them to advise that such things are legal when they wish to enable the things they want to. Just as the officer's of mine really think the law does enable them to hold that certain things are illegal when they wish to prevent them.

And if there is no one with the time and money to challenge to such advice and action - they will always be right and the law will prove to be in practice, what those who enforce it, wish it to be.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 10:16 AM

Sheffield City Council regard the singing and (playing on the piano)of carols as part of a religious service when taking place at Xmas time.

Since you are asking people to give examples of precedents for light touch treatment of the relevant law, there is one.

Feel free to quote me.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 09:13 AM

[The last post was cut off in its prime - for some reason - this is it in full]

The following (incomplete) advice from my council's Licensing Manager, recently provided to my MP - re the Act's requirements for indoor sports.

"The advice we offer applicants when they are intending to vary their licence for any reason is that they may as well, at that stage, tick the relevant box on the application form to make sure that they are covered for all eventualities including exhibition games without incurring further expenses at a later date. We have always made the distinction between standard games of skittles, darts, etc. and things such as celebrity darts players putting on an exhibition match."

You may think that this sensible approach would also apply to participatory pub gatherings that would repeatedly take place and be judged as successful by all concerned - in the complete absence of anything that could be described as an audience or spectators. But no.............

Contrast this with the following (ingenious) advice from my Council's director, provided to me and a local councillor after two meetings last year re the Act's requirements for live music.

it is important to emphasise that if musicians regularly congregate at a pub to play, this could constitute regulated entertainment and so the pub would be likely to apply for a licence to provide regulated entertainment as the Cove House Inn already has.

AND

As you know, the Act contains no definition of 'incidental' and my legal team advise me that in these cases it is normal to use dictionary definitions to aid interpretation.The dictionary definition of incidental includes the word 'casual' which, in our view, does impact on the regularity of incidental music. I can confirm that we would advise licensees asking us that we wold regard incidental music as that which:

could take place without an audience;

would not be advertised or held on regular basis;

and would not be amplified;


I do not know how you feel, but I tire of losing rights granted to every other member of the public (including the players of indoor sports) by being described as a musician (or under the old legislation- as a performer).

There is (as yet) no law that prevents members of the public from meeting and making music. And now even a 'performance' (i.e. to an audience) of incidental live music can be exempt from the licensing requirement - even when regular or amplified.

That such congregations could constitute regulated entertainment is not in doubt. But this depends on meeting the other requirments laid out in Schedule 1. Requirements that now equally apply to those congregating with pool cues and darts to play indoor sports, which also appear in the Schedule 1 list.

But with the added complication that a pub providing dart boards and pool tables now also require entertainment permission for these Entertainment Facilities.

So why - when there are exemptions for live music and none for indoor sports - is this quite different advice being provided as being a requirement of the Act for two activites both listed in Schedule 1 of the Act?

The advice re 'incidental' is nonsence. For before delving into the dictionary, the officers would first need to read the Act's Statutory Guidance. Where they would see that their fanciful interpretation would preclude the example of incidental live music that is provided there. That of stand-up comedy. Which could take place with an audience, be advertised and take place on a regular basis and still be exempt.

And without the need to delve into a dictionary - they appear to have no trouble in understanding what (the playing of) incidental recorded music that is and of exempting this.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 08:28 AM

The following advice from my council's Licensing Manager, recently provided to my MP - re on indoor sports.

"The advice we offer applicants when they are intending to vary their licence for any reason is that they may as well, at that stage, tick the relevant box on the application form to make sure that they are covered for all eventualities including exhibition games without incurring further expenses at a later date. We have always made the distinction between standard games of skittles, darts, etc. and things such as celebrity darts players putting on an exhibition match."

Contrast this with the following advice from my Council's director, provided to me and a local councillor after two meetings last year.

it is important to emphasise that if musicians regularly congregate at a pub to play, this could constitute regulated entertainment and so the pub would be likely to apply for a licence to provide regulated entertainment as the Cove House Inn already has.

AND


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 04:37 AM

The law is rarely applied equally, anywhere you care to look. Sometimes if you are stopped for a road traffic offence you are let off with a caution. Sometimes you aren´t.

To a certain extent only that may well be the case in practice, but there are policies and guidelines which underpin these variations and allow them to be challeged if they are exceeded or abused. And they are people with enough balls to challenge them.

But what is happening here is that employees of Local Authorities are cherry-picking the legislation and are being encouraged to do this by short term self-interests. They are advising the bits they like as being a requirement of the Act and simply ignoring bits they do not.

As usual it is minority interests that suffer from this selective zeal - as the numbers are few and its supporters appearently so cowed and respectful that their interests can be safely ignored.

A good example is when the officers of Sheffield City Council suggested that the piano required for the carol events was moved out of the bar and into the hall.

The reason for this of course was that a playable piano (according to DCMS advice) would qualfy as an Entertainment Facility. Just its presence would require Premise Licence entertainment permission.

What these same officers are ignoring - is that equally just the presence of a pool table and dart board, would now also qualify as an Entertainment Facility.

So since the introduction of this Act - all the premises in their area (and everywhere else in England and Wales) - if they do not have specific entertainment permission for indoor sports - are illegal.   

I am not against these activities but this is a requirement of this poor legislation. So perhaps we should all ensure that our local authorities do follow this requirement of the Act and publicly question why they are not? Then when all the indoor sports players in England and Wales are also affected - there will be more voices than the current few, demanding that this legislation is urgently reviewed?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 03:47 AM

The law is rarely applied equally, anywhere you care to look. Sometimes if you are stopped for a road traffic offence you are let off with a caution. Sometimes you aren´t.

The government will argue that they have put the legislation into place to enable local authorities to act in a way that suits particular local circumstances.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Apr 07 - 03:20 AM

The government has brought in a law which few people agree with and some councils have applied it more firmly than any other.

But we would all I think agree that it the SAME law that applies everywhere in England and Wales.

I am rather tired of attitude the attitude that accepts that the treatment live music making receives is some kind of lottery, dependant on where you live.

If live music making can be protected well under this legislation in one part of the land - it up to those fortunate few to ensure that others do not suffer and that everyone else has the protection the words of this legislation provide.

I am sure that some employees of some of our local authorities are happy to return to version of the old feudal system and have caps doffed by those wishing to be granted personal favours by terrified and powerless peasants. But it is up to us to ensure that the words of this law are followed equally everywhere by those employed to operate it and that they are not allowed to make it up for their convienience.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 06 Apr 07 - 12:23 PM

The fact is that you always did need permission to perform on council property. In the same way that you always needed permission to perform in a pub. Few people who run folk clubs object (when they are asked) to pay for the rent of a room.

The fact that the council ignored that was up to them. They always could charge to grant permission.

The government has brought in a law which few people agree with and some councils have applied it more firmly than any other.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 06:11 PM

Roger, Roger. When did a local authority worry about justification where there's money to be grabbed?

Don T.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Mr Happy
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 11:43 AM

What we need is a revulsion!!


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 11:23 AM

I foresee organisers of events applying to the licensees (the council) for permission, and being granted same upon payment of a hefty fee, failing which, no permission granted.

In the early stages of this local plan - the Licensing Manager did write and indicate in the local paper that the Council would be charging a fee for this second round of entertainment permission on the same public spaces.

This idea seems to have died a death but as the Echo article stops rather suddenly, when it moves away from the general spin and on to the details - it is difficult to tell if a fee is still part of the thinking. Although I am not sure exactly how a fee could be justified.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 11:00 AM

God help me, I find myself agreeing with Roger on this one, tho' not quite for the same reasons.

I foresee organisers of events applying to the licensees (the council) for permission, and being granted same upon payment of a hefty fee, failing which, no permission granted.

It offers local authorities the option to circumvent the terms of the act, a fact which will not, I am sure, have escaped the notice of their accountants.

So there is at least the potential to pay twice.

Good old Nanny state England. I wish I were young enough to emigrate, I really do.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Mr Happy
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 10:47 AM

so does this mean one could busk in a pub with a load of others?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Apr 07 - 10:40 AM

If any entertainment does take place without this second round of 'form filling in' or if any permitted entertainment should continue on these spaces beyond the automatic 8pm curfew - would the Council (as the enforcing authority) have to prosecute the Council (as the Premises Licence holder) for this breach?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 06:40 PM

What was the procedure to use these spaces before the Act?

With respect to busking, the Government has already made it clear that it was never the intention that busking should be caught by the Licensing Act in the first place!

As a result of this particular 'quick-fix' all the safeguards that were carefully drafted in the Act to protect events from the whims of local authority officers have gone - and as a result of 'busting this red tape' all the best busking spots locally now require forms to be filled in to apply for advance permission from licensing officers.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 01:07 PM

It has saved a load of hassle..............

That is was thought to be required realy says it all. I suggest that it has only papered over the cracks in the ill-concieved, legislation.

Any 'hassle' it may appear to have saved is only that caused in the first place by this so-called reform and any red tape it may have busted, was only needless red tape created by the Act.

But the danger is that the legislation provides safeguards, if an event is prevented or restricted by a Local Authority's licensing policy.

Any event prevented (for any reason) on land where the local authority is the licence holder in this sinister fashion - will not have any recourse. Which is why of course the employees of my council are so keen on it - for it is they alone who will be able to decide these things. And that is just as they like it.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 12:39 PM

Well for example they might (as owners) refuse permission for naked mud wrestling. As regulators they cannot refuse permission for it.

If they can't refuse permission it - why then are my council's officers saying the following?

Borough council licensing officer Sue King said: "The licenses cover plays, live music, recorded music, wrestling and boxing - any sort of entertainment.

"To hold an event applicants will need to contact the council for permission and application forms.

"Things like busking would probably be nodded through, and for charities we probably wouldn't


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 12:29 PM

As proprietor of a licensed premise the council can accept or refuse to accept any booking as it wishes, exactly as can a church hall or a pub with a function room. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the council's licensing function.

That this procedure turns the council from the deciding authority into the licensee - with the descretion to stage what they want - is of course my main concern.

But the question posed is still a relevant one. The Local Authority has applied to itself for permission to stage all the forms of Regulated Entertainment on these spaces. Then given itself - as the licensee - permission to do so. This is done - it is claimed for the benefit and on behalf of the public.

So what possible grounds can a local authority have, that would justify any member of that public, filling in yet another form to ask for the same permission for the same Regulated Entertainment for their employees not to unconditionally grant it? What is good for the goose should also be good enough for the gander.

Cutting red tape this certainly is not. I can imagine if the Act had required the councils to devise and process these new applications from the public and to do so for free - the Local Government Association would have said it was not possible and demanded more staff and more funds.

The only attraction this has for our councils - is a further move towards them having total control.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 12:15 PM

And as entertainment permission has already been granted for Regulated Entertainment on these spaces - why does anyone need to fill in applications forms for additional permission - as such permission can hardly be refused?

Well for example they might (as owners) refuse permission for naked mud wrestling. As regulators they cannot refuse permission for it.

Sheffield City Council did this without the attendant publicity for the whole of the area as bounded by the Inner Ring Road. Amongst other things it has allowed all sorts of processions - not least the Lord Mayor´s Parade!!

They also licenced all the major venues they own such as parks. It has saved a load of hassle..............


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 12:07 PM

What was the procedure to use these spaces before the Act?

It was only the Act's extension of licensing to apply practically everywhere that has made this attempt at damage limitation necessary - and that is the best that can be claimed for it.

No one needed prior permission to busk.

The Punch and Judy man - who under this legislation is required to obtain premises licence permission for their every beach perfomance - would be the best one to explain in detail.

I doubt if there would have been an automatic 8 pm curfew either.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Snuffy
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 09:02 AM

And as entertainment permission has already been granted for Regulated Entertainment on these spaces - why does anyone need to fill in applications forms for additional permission - as such permission can hardly be refused?

The council grants entertainment permission to the proprietor of premises: it is then up to the proprietor to decide what entertainment he allows on his premises.

As proprietor of a licensed premise the council can accept or refuse to accept any booking as it wishes, exactly as can a church hall or a pub with a function room. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the council's licensing function.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Folkiedave
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 08:32 AM

What was the procedure to use these spaces before the Act?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 05:36 AM

I have just noticed the Echo's editorial comment on this subject (or spin)

Dorset Echo VIEWPOINT
Dorset Echo April 3 2007
Cutting through the red tape

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council is, somewhat unusually for a local authority being held up as a shining example of how to cut red tape.

The council has been recognised by the Department of Culture Media and Sports (DCMS) for its efforts in simplifying the licensing process.

For the public has licensed 19 public spaces for entertainment - such as Hope Square, Lodmoor Country Park and Easton Gardens - which means event organisers simply have to contact the council for permission, rather than apply for a public entertainment licence.

The beauty of this system is in its simplicity and no wonder the DCMS is recommending that other local authorities take note.

For not only is the procedure a lot less arduous for applicants, it is surely also less time-consuming and costly for the council - and that can only be a good thing for the everyone.

We hope this new register system encourages more organisations and individuals to consider staging events in the borough.

Resorts such as Weymouth and Portland need as much activity as possible to continue to attract visitors.

Perhaps we can now look forward to more events - from beach volleyball to busking - this summer?   
ENDS


This view is making even more assumptions than the article.

For where is there any comment from DCMS?

Why is assumed that obtaining free entertainment permission from the council for every event on these spaces, is a lot less arduous, time consuming and costly - than individuals paying the same council for such permission?

And as entertainment permission has already been granted for Regulated Entertainment on these spaces - why does anyone need to fill in applications forms for additional permission - as such permission can hardly be refused?

But as it looks as if all the activities on these sites only has permission up to 8pm - the sort of activities are already rather limited by this restriction.

It would be nice to see this as a move towards less control - but I suspect its attraction for LAs like mine - is in fact the very opposite.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Apr 07 - 04:50 AM

I am not sure about any red tape being busted here - but the attempt to make further restrictions of personal freedom and spin it as such - certainly makes me see red.

There is no mention in the following article, that the need for this red tape, that is supposedly being busted, was imposed in the first place by the DCMS in the recent Licensing reform - in the licensing Act 2003. No wonder these LA attempts to bail them out - are praised by the DCMS

What concerns me the most, is that by moving from the legislation's constraints place on them, of simply issuing licenses for these open spaces, to the position of being the licensee of these spaces - the council's officers can now prevent and restrict anything from taking place. For a licensee does not have to explain to anyone why they may not wish to stage a certain activity - as it is accepted that this is a matter for them.

Front page of the Dorset Echo April 3 2007 (no not April the 1st).

---------------------------------------------------------------------
RED TAPE BUSTERS

Borough praised for simplifying system of licenses
By Laura Kitching

laura.kitchen@dorsetecho.co.uk

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council is being hailed as a national example for open air entertainment after council bosses cut through red tape.

Weymouth and Portland Borough Council was one of the first in the country to join the Register of Licensed Public Spaces in England and Wales to allow events to take place.

The council set the trend by licensing 19 public spaces and venues for entertainment.

Now the Government is hailing the borough as one of the best in the country for its trailblazing work and urged other councils to follow its lead.

The Department of Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) has recognised the council for licensing a wide range of spaces - especially the beach and Esplanade area - to encourage events such as the world youth sailing championship, folk festival, youth beach sports festival and beach volleyball.

The success comes amid pleas for Weymouth to encourage café culture and take advantage of the Olympic sailing events to boost its image and local economy.

Licensing committee chairman, Coun David Manning, said: "It is good. We were one of the first in the country to do it and it is hoped that by effectively cutting the red tape events organisers and individuals looking for event ventures will be attracted to Weymouth and Portland.

"It means that the beaches and places like that can have the events on them without having the problem of getting individual licences. It's making the whole space much more usable for local people."

Coun Manning added: added; "We want to attract people now, not just for the Olympics in 2012."

The DCMS is pointing to Weymouth and Portland as a good example of a council which is enabling its community to partake or organise cultural, sport and other such licensable activities.

The council is now among more than 100 councils listed on the Register of Licensed Public Spaces in England and Wales. Its aim is to provide event organisers and entertainers with a list of places that can readily hold outdoor attractions.

In the borough, Wyke Regis Gardens and Easton Gardens are licensed from 10am-8pm and 17 other places are licensed from 10am.

They include Chiswell and West Weares, Custom House Quay, Greenhill Gardens, Hope Square, Lodmoor Country Park, Nothe Gardens, Princess of Wales Memorial Gardens, Southwell, Underhedge Gardens, Sutton Road, The town centre, Victoria Gardens, Weymouth pavilion forecourt, and most of the beach and promenade from the pavilion to the bandstand.


Borough council licensing officer Sue King said: "The licenses cover plays, live music, recorded music, wrestling and boxing - any sort of entertainment.


"To hold an event applicants will need to contact the council for permission and application forms.

"Things like busking would probably be nodded through, and for charities we probably wouldn't
ENDs (at this point).


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 08:25 AM

Regulatory assessment of the Regulations setting out the form of TEN application - the regulatory assessment of the DCMS.

Note para 2.5 "The Local Authority may not of its own motion otherwise intervene"

Regulatory assessment


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 08:14 AM

Of course (as I should have said, there are the number and capacity limits (not more than 500 people, etc) too.

More guidance from a different council


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 08:11 AM

As a matter ONLY of academic interest, it is curious, as upon my reading of the guidelines (not from the Miskn Area) below, the only way to prevent a TEN being effective topermit the event is if the police object....


Guidance


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Leadfingers
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 08:00 AM

400 ! And andy DOES know what he is doing !


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 29 Mar 07 - 07:53 AM

Andy is far from stupid & if there is anything which could affect other festivals he is quite capable of identifying what that may be, and finding a way of ensuring that the apt information becomes known to other festival organisers who may need to know.

I am sure that you are right in most of this.

However, my view is that it is probably best if festival atendees and festival organisers both keep each other informed. For at least they should be on the same side.

I am still wondering for example, with the legislation the same as it was last year - why that one was able to take place but this one is prevented at the last hour?


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 09:49 AM

Miskin 2007 cancelled!


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 09:46 AM

But please, for now, accept that action on your part could do more harm than good.

If you had read my words - you would know that I have no intention of taking any action other than making this request and that your carefully considered post is rather wasted.

That does not mean that I accept the concept that any action I or anyone else may decide to take could take would make this year's situation any worse locally or have any negative impact on future events.

In countries like England and Wales where such things are subject to the rule of law - the sort of fear that there may be some form of stubborn reaction against people expressing their frustration and concern about the reasons for this local cock-up - should not be a factor. And if it really is a factor - then this must be addressed.

Perhaps you would accept that this is a matter that should be left for individuals to decide for themselves?

All that is being requested - partly to prevent uninformed speculation - which I agree may not help anyone - is for the public to be supplied with some information as to why this year's long-planned event had to be cancelled at this late stage.

For you would perhaps agree that the only hard 'information' supplied to the public to date - is that the festival has had to be cancelled? And that quite natually the next question will be be why?

And that in the absence of this information - all that can result is uninformed speculation and the sort of misdirected frustration and division that is evidenced here by posts like yours?

Whatever and whoever may be at fault here for the loss of this year's event - it is not me - is it?

From the sort of flak received here simply for requesting that the public be given some information - you could be excused for assuming that the threat to the continuation of this festival was somehow my fault................

When the public is finally given the information they require - perhaps the resulting and currently misdirected frustration - with its obvious need to apportion some form of blame - can then hope that it will be directed at where it belongs and where it may actually have some positive effect.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: JudeL
Date: 27 Mar 07 - 09:03 AM

Shambles: Andy is being sensible and practical in trying to protect the FUTURE of the festival. The decision on this year has been made - it is cancelled & however sad we may be about that no amount of discussion is going to change that. BUT if we interfere with his negotiations over future years we can upset them to the point there may not be a festival at Miskin in the future. Andy is far from stupid & if there is anything which could affect other festivals he is quite capable of identifying what that may be, and finding a way of ensuring that the apt information becomes known to other festival organisers who may need to know. I know you are upset, as are we all, and would like to think that there must be something that can be done, even if it's only to help prevent other festivals from suffering the same fate, or to use this to put more pressure on the MPs to change the law. But please, for now, accept that action on your part could do more harm than good.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Mar 07 - 06:20 AM

What is needed here is diplomacy, and neither you, nor for that matter I, can hold a candle to Andy in THAT department.

Whatever diplomacy was used - you seem to be overlooking the fact that it has clearly failed, as this year's event will not be taking place.

I can see little evidence of any of this diplomacy being shown.

What I can see is that many people who may be equally upset about the loss of this event being accused of threatening it.

Publicly appointioning blame on the local athority without supplying any information and expecting people not only take this on trust but and then telling them that they have all the information they require - could hardly be described as an example of diplomacy at its best.

A cynic could be excused for thinking that if this is an example of the diplomacy used locally - then this alone may be a major cause of why this year's event has been cancelled at this late stage.

I am not a cynic and under the circumstances - I think that this initial attitude towards those equally concerned about the festival's loss can be excused for now.

But I hope that on reflection a more sensible approach will prevail and that some information can be supplied which will help others and prevent any uninformed public speculation from causing any further damage locally.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 24 Mar 07 - 08:57 PM

Roger,

Pretty please, just for once, hold your tongue and listen to what someone else is saying.

It is obvious that Andy and Jillie are still in contact with their local authority, and involved in what must be very delicate negotiation to ensure that we only lose Miskin for this year.

This is obviously a time for all of us to stand back and give them space to work.

When I first heard about this, my reaction was exactly the same as yours. "Here's the chance to tell Tony the bastard that we told him this would happen, and beat him over the head with it until we get the promised review".

IT WON'T WORK THOUGH!

In the unlikely event that they take notice, the first thing they will do is quiz the local authority, and given that they can find myriad excuses to exclude us from using Miskin Scout Village, that's exactly what they will do, out of spite.

A Pyrrhic victory, don't you think, to win the battle over licensing conditions, only to find them quoting Health & Safety (or some such)when they say NO!

What is needed here is diplomacy, and neither you, nor for that matter I, can hold a candle to Andy in THAT department.

Let be, Wait and see, and if diplomacy WON'T suffice, we may be able to apply the bludgeon at a later date. Personally, I pray it won't be necessary.

Meanwhile let's just keep kicking our MPs up the arse without involving Miskin.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Richard Atkins
Date: 24 Mar 07 - 12:14 AM

The Shambles, after my grump on the other thread adding this one to my tracer. Brill Thread .


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 10:03 PM

That sounds a lot like blackmail to me, Roger.

It is just pointing out the reality of the sad situation.

The intention is not of course to further harm this event locally but to adequatly inform, end the speculation generated and possibly help other people and events elsewhere from suffering the same fate and at the same late stage.

It used to be optimisticaly sang that 'The Truth Will Make Us Free'.

Half-truths and spin are the tactics of those who use petty rules and senseless interpretations for negative ends.

Let us not adopt the same methods and pretend (as they do) that anything positive can come out of these.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: Snuffy
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 06:50 PM

You would agree that anyone has the right to write a letter to the L.A concerned in order to ask them what their interpretation is. Hopefully no one will have to do this and the information requested will be freely and helpfully supplied here.

That sounds a lot like blackmail to me, Roger. "Give me the details or I will go direct to the LA in spite of your assertion that this will probably do more harm than good"

We can't prevent you from acting like an arsehole but please, please, please - in this case do as Andy has requested, and don't bugger Miskin for all time.


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Subject: RE: Affected by The Licensing Act 2003
From: The Shambles
Date: 23 Mar 07 - 02:23 PM

Sham, Andy doesn't have to say any more than he wants to.

That of course is his choice and he has explained his reasons.

And mine is to make this request and I have explained these reasons.

My view is that at this point there can certainly be no fear that further harm can be done to this year's aborted Miskin event by explaining what the interpretation was and how this event was affected by the Licensing Act 2003.

That is the whole point of this thread, which is of limited use without such detail.

And I suggest that far less harm will be done to any future local events if those who are affected are supplied with the correct details of this one's demise.

With the infomation already supplied publicly there will only be speculation. And with this, the possibilty that far more harm will   result locally and eleswhere from any attempt to withold the true facts? You never know - with these people armed with the truth - this
may actually help the local situation.

For the truth is out there. The interpretation used is fact.

If it does not have legal support - it can be challenged and other local authorities be persuaded not to follow it. If it does have legal support then it is important to know what it is so that it can be changed.

You would agree that anyone has the right to write a letter to the L.A concerned in order to ask them what their interpretation is. Hopefully no one will have to do this and the information requested will be freely and helpfully supplied here.


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