Struggling live music venues across Aberdeen and the Highlands have received a financial boost from the Scottish Government.
New emergency funding has been handed out to 11 venues across the north and north-east, with hopes that it will keep them afloat until the summer.
The businesses have received almost £500,000 in total, with the money designed to keep them going while they have been shut due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Popular rock bar Krakatoa were handed £59,500, which will help them survive until July, with hopes that live music will return then.
Craig Adams, representing the worker’s collective that owns the venue, welcomed the funding which secured their future for the next few months.
He said: “This should secure our future until we can go back to work when Covid restrictions allow.
“We don’t envisage live music will be able to return until July going by what the government has said so far.
“It would be good if it returned before that but this funding will through to then.
“Hopefully by that time, most people will be vaccinated which would allow us to pick up where we left off.
“The process for applying for the funding has been relatively painless and we’re thankful to Creative Scotland and the Scottish Government for that.”
More than 80 venues across the country received a total of £4million through the Scottish Government’s Grassroots Music Venues Stabilisation Fund delivered by Creative Scotland.
Five other Aberdeen venues received a share of this money, which it is hoped will help address the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and prevent closure.
The iconic Blue Lamp jazz bar on the Gallowgate was given £9,554 to help them stay open.
The premises is now run by Lewis Brown, who took over from his grandad, the famous Sandy Brown.
Drummonds on Belmont Street received £60,000, while Tunnels on Carnegie’s Brae received £50,000.
Two more of the city’s favourite nightspots, Unit 51 and Bridge Street Social Club were given £50,000 each.
Inverness and the Highlands
Five venues in the Highlands and islands also received more than £200,000 in emergency funding.
Hootananny and the Gellions in Inverness were handed £66,200 and £50,000 respectively.
Both pubs launched Crowdfunders last year to keep themselves afloat through their enforced Covid closures.
The owners of Hootananny revealed that revenue at the Church Street venue had plummeted by more than 70% as they faced a monthly bill of £10,000 to keep the lights on.
Meanwhile, the city’s oldest venue, The Gellions, also appealed for the public’s support to raise £35,000 to help keep them afloat following months of virtually no income and reduction of capacity to less than 25%.
Tooth and Claw in Inverness also received £59,996, which was welcomed by venue manager James Carr.
He said: “It means the world to us here at The Tooth & Claw to again be supported by The Scottish Government and Creative Scotland through the Grassroots Music Venue Stabilisation Fund.
“It will allow us to return and continue to support the local grassroots music scene and the extremely talented individuals that take to our stage.
“Like the general public we cannot wait for the return of live music.”
The Aros Centre on the Isle of Skye received £28,000 and the Sound Archive were handed £34,911.
Culture secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “This is an incredibly difficult time for the live music sector and it is important that we support our grassroots music venues – which are key to our rich and diverse music scene – to survive until they can reopen.
“This fund, part of our ongoing commitment to support cultural sectors during the pandemic, aims to do that by ensuring financial support reaches a wide variety of music venues across the country.
“I thank the music sector for continuing to work with us to identify the most effective ways to help it.”