Politicians and music groups give Holyrood policy ‘warm welcome’

Lewis Macdonald

An MSP’s policy has been welcomed by music groups and politicians.

MSP Lewis Macdonald, who campaigned for the change, said he was “delighted” by the news.

He added: “This decision will change the outcome for many venues currently facing an uncertain future, and is an important step in protecting these venues and the night time economy they help support.”

Beverley Whitrick, strategic director at the Music Venue Trust, said: “Music Venue Trust warmly welcomes the announcement.

“Ministers have listened to the case and taken on board the fact that grassroots music venues need protection and recognition for their contribution to our towns and cities.”

Michael Dugher, CEO of UK Music, added: “It’s great that Scottish Ministers have listened and responded so positively to UK Music, Music Venue Trust and other industry campaigners, all of whom have worked so hard to make sure grassroots venues get the help and protection they need.”

Aberdeen North MP Kirsty Blackman said: “Grassroots music venues, and licensed pubs and clubs are some of the best places to hear music and that tradition must be protected.

“In recent years in Aberdeen we’ve seen venues shut down due to noise complaints and there is of course still work to be done to help existing venues and homes, but this is a good first step from the Scottish Government.”

Announcing the policy, Minister for Local Government and Housing Kevin Stewart said: “It is only right we do what we can to protect the established and emerging musical talent and that is why we are embedding the Agent of Change principle in our planning guidance.”