Boris wants to stop the attrition.
London’s nightlife has taken a clobbering in recent years, waving goodbye to stalwarts like the Astoria, Vibe Bar, The Joiners Arms, Madame Jojo’s, Buffalo Bar and of course, most recently, Plastic People.
Having finally realised that the capital’s endless property boom isn’t working out so well for the small businesses that actually make London a place worth living, the Mayor of London has decided to launch a “music venues taskforce” to protect what’s left of the city’s independent gig circuit.
Describing venues as “teeming wombs of London talent”, Boris Johnson said it was “worrying” that pressure from property prices and redevelopment was forcing them to close down.
“They are of huge economic importance, and not just cultural importance to our city,” he added, citing big-selling pop behemoths Ed Sheeran, Adele and the Rolling Stones.
The Music Venues Taskforce will be chaired by Music Venue Trust, the charity that aims to “protect, secure and improve the UK’s grassroots circuit music venues.”
Other members of the taskforce include UK Music, the campaigning and lobbying group which represents every the recorded and live music industry, and the Musicians Union. The taskforce will be taking feedback from venues, local government and leading musicians, including singer-songwriter Frank Turner, who has been appointed as a special advisor to the panel.
Obviously the Mayor’s office has used The Clash’s ‘London Calling’ to introduce Johnson’s speech, because no new songs have been written about the capital since 1979. [via The Spaces]