Music Venue Trust

DCMS Select Committee announces review, hearing & report into grassroots music venues crisis

The initiative was announced by DCMS Select Committee Chair Caroline Dinenage MP.

London, 19th October 2023 The cross-party Culture, Media and Sport Committee, which scrutinizes the work of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and its associated public bodies has announced a hearing and review into the current crisis facing grassroots music venues (GMVS) and will produce a full report of its findings in 2024.

The initiative was announced by DCMS Select Committee Chair Caroline Dinenage MP who confirmed that a call for evidence will be made in the near future with written submissions invited. Witnesses will be also called to parliament to enable the committee to understand the current crisis and make recommendations to all stakeholders on how to address it.

Select committees are temporary committees created with a timeline to complete a specific task and rather than researching and reporting bills to the House of Commons, they research specific issues or oversee government agencies.

Speaking at Music Venue Trust’s annual ‘Venues Day’ conference in London earlier this week Caroline Dinenage said, “One of the pillars during my campaign to become the Chair of the DCMS Select Committee was to say that we need to do a full review of grassroots music venues in the UK, the challenges that they are facing, but also what the opportunities are and what more we can do to support them. And that’s what our committee has agreed to do. We will be announcing a call for evidence quite soon, and then probably just after Christmas, we’ll start taking live evidence from people as well. We will then work to produce a full report and to put forward recommendations. It will be recommendations not just to the government, but also to the industry and recommendations for local authorities.”

Former DCMS Select Committee Chair Kevin Brennan MP said at the same event, “The committee is going to produce a report around grassroots music venues and Caroline will be leading that work. I think that’s an indication of how this topic wasn’t really on the policy agenda five years ago and Music Venue Trust has been instrumental in changing that. This is now the next thing on the agenda of the Select Committee and is all about accountability and getting out there into the open what the real issues are and what’s really going on. And we know from the information we’ve had from the grassroots music sector already that they are facing real challenges at the moment.”

Mark Davyd, CEO of Music Venue Trust, which represents almost 900 grassroots music venues in the UK said, “We are grateful to Caroline and the other members of the DCMS Select Committee for focusing their efforts on the myriad challenges facing grassroots music venues. The threat to this vital sector of our cultural life has never been more acute and we look forward to assisting the process and to seeing the recommendations they put forward.”

Music Venue Trust

Music Venue Trust is a UK registered charity which acts to protect, secure and improve Grassroots Music Venues.