By Jamie Mann
The government has expressed their will to improve the UK live music scene after proposing to allow small capacity venues to hold gigs without a licence last Thursday. Though the proposition is currently undergoing a 12-week consultation, musicians and venue-owners alike have been offered hope for a prominent music scene; the scene has been somewhat restricted since the initiation of the 2003 Licencing Act. The act currently enforces that venues of any capacity must possess a licence in order to host musical entertainment; obtaining a licence is not a simple task as many have found to process strenuous and expensive to complete.
Nick Stewart, manager of the popular club Sneaky Pete’s agreed that the government’s proposal would be an asset to Edinburgh’s music scene with numerous clubs and pubs who could grant customers live music. Stewart did not deem the process of achieving a licence an ordeal mentioning that it was “pretty easy” however, the capacity of his club was reduced from 120 to 84. Though Stewart highlighted that the 2005 act affects Scotland and differs from the 2003 act, should the government’s proposition be successful , an improvement Edinburgh’s music scene could be imminent.