Change the law to protect live music venues, says MSP



29 May 2018

North East Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald today called on the Scottish Government to change the law to protect live music venues, through the Planning (Scotland) Bill.

During today’s Stage One debate on the issue, Lewis Macdonald called on Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart to listen to the evidence of the Music Venue Trust, and ensure that the Agent of Change principle is enshrined in law, and not just included in planning guidance and policy.

Lewis Macdonald said today:

“It is disappointing that the Minister has not yet been persuaded by the Local Government Committee or the music industry on the issue of introducing the principle of Agent of Change into the Planning Bill, making developers responsible for sound-proofing next to music venues.

“Making changes to planning guidance and planning policy on this issue will only go so far. They are not binding on developers or planning authorities in a court of law, whereas statutory protection for music venues would be binding on all concerned.

“I plan to table amendments to the Planning Bill at Stage 2 to enshrine protection for live music venues in law, and not leave it open to interpretation by planning officers or the courts.

“I hope that MSPs from all parties will support my amendments, and ensure that this common sense approach to the problems faced by live music venues is included in the final version of the Planning Bill.”