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Griffiths to update planning policy to support music venues

Words: Laura Edgar
Live music / iStock_000051573308

Welsh environment and rural affairs secretary Lesley Griffiths has announced that she will revise Wales’s national planning policy to support live music venues.

Griffiths wants an explicit reference to the ‘Agent of Change’ principle within updated national planning policy.

This means that if new developments or uses, such as a live music venue, are introduced, it would be the developer’s responsibility to ensure that solutions to address and mitigate the noise are put forward.

Griffiths also said Planning Policy Wales would be updated to allow the designation of areas of cultural significance for music within local development plans.

The decision to update planning policy follows a campaign based around Womanby Street in Cardiff, where a number of live music venues can be found.

The campaign sought for the ‘Adoption of Change’ principle to be adopted into national planning policy.

Griffiths said live music venues contribute “greatly to Wales’s thriving cultural scene” and the night-time economy.

“Although the continued vibrancy of areas like Womanby Street depends on the ongoing participation of a number of different parties, including local authorities, the venues themselves and their customers, I have heard the calls to update our national planning policy to protect live music venues.”

She said she hopes local planning authorities would have the confidence to apply these measures when considering planning applications.

Griffiths’ announcement came on the same day that music market development consultancy Sound Diplomacy published a 15-page Music Export Pledge.

The pledge aims to highlight to local councils the need for a Music Export Office in every country with thriving Music Cities to focus on building strong bridges that bring to the fore the benefits of the music industry to a city’s culture and economy.

The pledge outlines how a Music Export Office should operate, the benefit to the economy, the development of music talent and the support to the industry to help with key decision-making when dealing with international networks.

Image credit | iStock