As of 1st April 2012, Glasgow City Council will be changing their 'Entertainments' License, to include all free events, including Exhibitions. After this date, all proposed public exhibitions, regardless of scale, will need to submit a tedious application along with a hefty fee, 6 weeks prior to the date, as well as public notification, 6 sets of lay out plans, and will involve consultation with Strathclyde police, Strathclyde Fire Brigade, Building Control, Environmental Health, local councillors, local community councils, and local area management committees.
Phil Millar in the Herald had a bash at explaining it yesterday, click on link for his piece. The upshot is that Glasgow City Council are suggesting that if you put on an exhibition in your living room, launch a book in your garden shed or school hall, book a band to play in your church hall -- whatever, you'll need a license to conform with regulations, even if the event is free and played in front of a handful of people. Prices for the license range from £124 -£7500 depending on size of venue and crowd.
Naturally there's an on-line petition, which has seen a remarkable take up of 3800 signatures in just a couple of days. Do have a read at it and if persuaded please sign it.
Aberdeen city council have suggested that as they view the arts as an integral part of their ongoing regeneration they will waive 75% of any license fee which may fall under the new regulations.
As those coves at The Stove discovered to their cost D&G have a set number of licenses you need to pay if you're planning on doing something in the public realm, be that serving food, pitching a stall or err operating a scissor lift. It doesn't matter if your event is free, them licenses need a-paying... With that in mind, could any of our councillors, MSPs or councillor officers who pour so assiduously through the Commonty every week, contact the relevant council department and let our readers know how Dumfries and Galloway council plan to introduce this new law on April fools day?
Will they simply do as Glasgow City Council has done, blame the Scottish Government and charge the full whack or interpret the law with a bit of common sense and discretion and reduce the fee by 75% as Aberdeen? Or perhaps Dumfries and Galloway council can show some revolutionary zeal, as it used to be famous for, stand up for the creative community and be the first in Scotland to waive the fee and tell the Holyrood bureaucrats to take a hike?
Please feel free to comment below.
Excellent news from our intrepid Arts councillor Jane Maitland.
Posted by MMaC