APPG on Music Meet to Discuss COVID Challenges for Industry

21/10/2020: The APPG on Music, chaired by Conservative MP David Warburton, held a virtual meeting to discuss the impact of COVID on the music industry.

The cross-party group of MPs, which acts as a forum between industry and Parliament heard a presentation from James Ainscough, Chief Executive of Help Musicians, a charity which works to support musicians of all genres through times of crisis. With an estimated 72% of the industry self-employed, James highlighted the work Help Musicians has been carrying out to support those who fall through the gaps in support. He highlighted the unprecedented demand the charity had seen through its COVID hardship fund which distributed £8.35m over four weeks to 16,700 musicians in its initial phase.

The Group discussed what further support is needed to support creative freelancers through the coming months as the Government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme tapers off as well as what measures must be put in place for the live sector to successfully recover.

UK Music members who have established or contributed to hardship funds also attended including AIM, BPI, Musicians’ Union, MMF, PPL and PRS for Music. UK Music’s new CEO Jamie Njoku-Goodwin also addressed the Group on the challenges facing the industry as it seeks to rebuild itself post-pandemic.

The meeting was attended by David Warburton MP, Kevin Brennan MP, Lord Tim Clement-Jones, Chris Matheson MP, Louise Haigh MP, Conor McGinn MP and representatives from the offices of Baroness Jane Bonham-Carter and Anne McLaughlin MP. Representatives from Sheffield City Region and their music board were also present as well as a number of industry figures.

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