Thursday, March 20, 2014

Trustees Announced

Each of our Trustees and Patrons has written a special message for us explaining why they want you to support this project and what live music means to them.

Chris Prosser, Owner of Suspicious Marketing Group and Director of the International Live Music Conference
Every year at the ILMC (International Live Music Conference) we discuss the root to success for a band from a live point of view.  With theatres, arenas and stadiums to one side the only factor here that isn’t a variable is the club circuit.  Without it we don’t have the breeding ground for new bands.  We have see the careers of new artists being compressed into ever decreasing timeframes and we have seen their ability to make money decline also.  The one thing we can control is the place where they will be born and nurtured and to me the Music Venues Trust is the nursery where that will happen.

Beverley Whitrick, Strategic Director

In the UK there remains an enormous discrepancy between public funding for certain styles of music over others. We all know that we have some of the best pop/rock/punk/indie musicians in the world, yet the support for the small venues in which they develop their skills and stagecraft is incredibly limited. I would love to see the network of independent music venues recognised as forming an integral part of the UK's art infrastructure. I think that the Music Venue Trust can help achieve this.

Jason Dormon, Owner and co-founder of Tunbridge Wells Forum
I really love watching music in intimate spaces, it's an experience that can't be matched. For me, it's how a performance should be shared; the instant crack of the snare, a moment of serendipitous creative genius, a true and very real connection between artist and audience. Small venues are where the bands of tomorrow cut their teeth and learn their art. For the audience and other musicians it's the best place to be truly inspired. For many years this small circuit has been powered on passion, love and a quest for artistic excellence by the performers that play, the audiences that listen and volunteers that want to make things happen. Unfortunately, in the modern climate this alone is now not enough, with these important venues being sold and developed into the latest high street fast food franchise for short term financial gain. The Music Venue Trust is such a simple idea yet provides the ideal solution to protect these invaluable spaces.

Jeremy Mills, LLB TEP FRSA, Legal Advisor
I was fortunate to grow up around aspiring musicians and have access to
an incredible range of live music on my doorstep. Experiencing music like this, at its rawest and closest, has had a huge impact on my social network and tastes, and I am delighted to be part of the Music Venue Trust. We have been working hard to identify legal frameworks that can support this important resource in the future.

Sybil Bell, Founder of Independent Venue Week and FM Music Networking
Local venues are the lifeblood of the live music scene. It’s where bands start out, some of whom go on to play huge arenas around the world. It’s where they learn their craft, both musically and in terms of learning to be on the road. For fans, having somewhere well-run that brings new and exciting music to town is an essential part of the local community. There’s something very magical about going to see a band that you don’t know very much about and that experience when you’re two or three feet away from them – it’s something that can’t be repeated. We need these venues to give opportunities not just to the bands and the teams that support them but also to people who want to learn to work in the live industry and be the next generation of stage managers, sound people, lighting engineers, bookers and promoters. The Music Venue Trust offers the most realistic and robust route for these venues to be preserved and ensure that they will be around for years to come.

Mark Davyd, FRSA, Founder & CEO
The small music venue circuit is the breeding ground of British Music. It's where musicians learn their craft, what works, what doesn't, it's where they build the fan bases that take them to the labels that export them across the world. It's not an exaggeration to say that the small venue circuit is the foundation stone of UK Live Music, a multi-million pound industry employing hundreds of thousands of people across the world, all starting from that first faltering step onto a tiny stage. We have to act together to ensure UK musicians and music fans continue to have access to this essential part of UK music heritage. The Music Venue Trust has an achievable plan which we hope everybody; audiences, musicians and industry, will get behind and support.

You can contact our Board of Trustees directly by email at


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The Music Venue Trust was formed in January 2014 to protect and preserve the UK small music venue circuit.