Monday, January 08, 2018

Layla Moran says don't stop the music

An Oxford MP has backed a proposed law which could protect venues like the city's Cellar bar from harmful development. 
Layla Moran is supporting a bill which would force developers to take nearby small businesses into account in their plans. 
For music venues it could see housing developers made to pay for soundproofing at the venue to cut the risk of new neighbours complaining about noise. 
In cases like the Cellar, which faced eviction, the new law could force a landlord to offer compensation.
This, from the Oxford Mail, is a good local campaign for Layla Moran as she defends a music venue in the city.

But it is also an example of a much wider problem. A Guardian article from 2015 reported the closure of the Black Swan club in Sheffield:
It has joined many other famous venues, including Leicester’s Princess Charlotte, Leeds’ Duchess of York and Dudley’s JB’s, in shutting its doors. In central London, large-scale redevelopment projects have seen the closure of Madame Jo Jo’s and the Astoria and the relocation of the 12 Bar Club; Camden has witnessed the closure of the Purple Turtle and the Stillery. 
Several other Camden venues and Oxford Street’s 100 Club are said to be threatened. So, too, are a number of venues outside the capital, notably Southampton’s the Joiners, the Tunbridge Wells Forum, Exeter’s Cavern, Hull’s Adelphi and Manchester’s Band on the Wall. 
Reasons for the closures are manifold, but a common concern is the increasingly hostile environment for many venues. The pressure to build more housing has seen blocks of flats built next to clubs, causing a rise in noise-abatement notices that can cost thousands of pounds to contest.
The bill Layla is supporting is John Spellar's The Planning (Agent of Change) Bill. Read more about it on the Music Venue Trust website.

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