Even before being forced to close their doors due to the current global pandemic, many independent music venues across the UK were struggling to survive and obviously with no income at all right now their situation has gone from bad to worse . A few weeks ago we told you about a fantastic fundraising initiative launched by registered charity the Music Venue Trust ( using #SaveOurVenues) to help the 556 venues at risk of permanent closure, each having its own fundraising page and target amount needed to stay afloat during these challenging times with any excess raised going to a central fund . This campaign was largely inspired by the success of musician Frank Turner who had already raised thousands of pounds to help four of his local venues by staging a series of shows https://www.bellesandgals.com/2020/04/27/saveourvenues-campaign-launched-to-save-grassroots-music-venues/ ) .
Today brought some fantastic news in that 140 of those venues have now been removed from the ” critical list” as a result of this campaign, which has raised over £1.5 million in donations from music fans, music industry companies and other organisations, alongside important interventions from public bodies such as The London Mayor’s Office, Creative Wales and Arts Council England. There have already been over 150 fundraising events courtesy of the artist community with many more planned and the MVT offered valuable support too by providing legal and planning advice, liaising with landlords and in general helping venues navigate through all the accompanying bureaucracy.
However, it’s not time to be complacent, this is just a temporary stay of execution for these venues ( and there are many, many more still under imminent threat) . MVT founder Mark Davyd says ” we still desperately need more music industry companies to step up and help with donations alongside real action from government specifically around rent relief, more financial help and clearer guidance”.
For more information on the #saveourvenuescampaign, and to see how you can help, please visit: www.saveourvenues.co.uk