Tuesday, 25 November 2008


A new piece of licensing legislation which currently exists in 21 boroughs of London could have huge implications for events like Whitby Now and the live music scene in Whitby and beyond if it becomes nationally accepted.

"The form demands that licensees give police a mass of detail, including the names, aliases, private addresses and phone numbers of all musicians and other performers appearing at their venue, and the ethnic background of the likely audience. Failure to comply could mean the loss of a licence or even a fine and imprisonment. The police say they need the information demanded on Form 696, which runs to eight pages, so they can pinpoint which acts and venues attract troublemakers, and make sure venues are safe. But Feargal Sharkey, who rose to fame during the punk era as the vocalist on the single "Teenage Kicks" by the Undertones, is so angry about what he sees as a threat to live music that he is consulting lawyers about how to stop it."
Sharkey cited one such statement from Hillingdon Council in west London, which he says "tries to make a direct connection not only between crime and disorder and live music, but most astonishingly - I'm still knocked over in disbelief - between live music and the prevention of terrorism."

If you want to join the campaign against Form 696 you can join the Facebook group: http://tiny.cc/IuIS4 or follow the blog at: http://form696.blogspot.com

1 comment:

The Invisible Mice said...

The Musician's Union is currently seeking legal advice on whether the form can be challenged on data protection or human rights grounds. Once they’ve had that advice they will decide how to take it further.

Will keep you posted