Ministry of Sound Club

UK live music industry set to lose 170,000 jobs by Christmas





The UK live music industry is set to lose up to 170,000 jobs by Christmas, with many jobs already gone, accounting for up to two-thirds of those working in the sector. Since the Covid-19 pandemic began early this year, the live music industry has been decimated, with an 80% drop in revenues.

The research, conducted by music industry group Live, concludes that 144,000 of the industry’s 210,000 self-employed and freelance workers have already or are expected to lose their jobs. Meanwhile, roughly half of the 52,000 permanently employed staff have already or will lose their jobs in the next few months. The furlough scheme, which saw full-time staff have their wages covered up to 80% by the government, finishes at the end of October, with many staff already having been notified of redundancy as a result.

The UK live music industry has received hundreds of millions in grants from the UK government in recent weeks, with more funding rounds still yet to come, which should at least protect businesses from going under all together. However the move isn’t enough to allow these companies to retain non-essential staff, and some companies have simply missed out on grants all together.

It presents a difficult challenge for the industry, which was the first to close and will likely be the last to re-open, with plenty still calling on the government to do more. Quite when the pandemic will end remains unclear, however today an independent research paper by the University of Bristol concluded the upcoming Oxford/AstraZenca vaccine is working fully as intended and provides a strong immune response. A date for final approval is still not confirmed, yet it looks likely it will be before the end of the year, with a full roll out in early 2021, meaning it might not be too long until the industry can finally resume operations.

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