UK Music welcomes move to allow recording studios to stay open during lockdown

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden recently confirmed arts venues can also remain open for rehearsals.

Abbey Road Studios
Abbey Road Studios

A music industry body has welcomed the decision to allow recording studios to remain open during the new lockdown.

UK Music’s chief executive Jamie Njoku-Goodwin said the move was an “important vote of confidence” by the Government in the sector.

Professional recording studios in England, including residential studios, will be able to operate under the latest rules, while music video production can also go ahead.

Mr Njoku-Goodwin said: “This is extremely welcome news and an important vote of confidence by the Government in the UK music industry and our world-leading recording studios.

“I am delighted that ministers have recognised the huge amount of work that has gone into stringent measures to ensure that our studios are Covid-safe environments where work can and should continue.

“Studios are a key part of the ecosystem of the UK music industry that contributes £5.2 billion a year to the economy and employs 190,000 people.

“We are determined to continue to work with the Government to keep as much of the music industry open as possible as we strive to get the whole industry back on its feet.”

Entertainment venues, cinemas, pubs, bars, restaurants and non-essential retail will close across England from Thursday.

UK Music, the body that represents the commercial interests of the music industry, entered into discussions with its members following Boris Johnson’s lockdown announcement on Saturday.

It subsequently sought assurances from the Government that studios could continue to operate under the month-long lockdown.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden also recently confirmed arts venues can remain open for rehearsals as they are “places of work”, although audiences will be barred.

Minister of state for digital and culture Caroline Dinenage said: “Our world-renowned recording studios form the backbone of the recorded music sector, provide vital employment for musicians, engineers and producers, and make important contributions to our economy.

“As well as allowing artists to continue making albums, studios such as AIR Studios and Abbey Road produce soundtracks for blockbuster movies and our favourite TV series that have kept us entertained throughout the challenges of the pandemic.

“The Prime Minister has been clear that workplaces should stay open where people cannot work from home.

“This includes professional music recording studios, where work activity can continue in line with Covid-secure guidance.”

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