James Kennedy Britain Eu Brexit Iron Maiden James Kennedy Britain Eu

Brexit: UK government warned musicians and crew “could find themselves unemployed en masse”

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NME was invited to a hearing at the House Of Lords led by industry insiders and the #CarryOnTouring campaign earlier this month (Tuesday September 6), where the impact that new post-Brexit touring rules were having on the lives and jobs of UK musicians and road crew was revealed.

Music fans are now being encouraged to write to their MPs to demand action.Last year, the UK music industry spoke out together on how they had essentially been handed a “No Deal Brexit” when the government failed to negotiate visa-free travel and Europe-wide work permits for musicians and crew.

As a result, artists attempting to hit the road again after COVID found themselves on the predicted “rocky road” for the first summer of European touring after Britain left the EU – finding that the complications of Brexit are “strangling the next generation of UK talent in the cradle”.The hearing from live music industry workers at the House Of Lords – attended by a number of MPs and Lords but no one from the Conservative Party – presented the main obstacles once again; that work permits were creating extra red tape for people to be hired from the UK, that carnets and the lack of clear information was leading to extra expense and confusion, that it was unknown how much merchandise could be taken and sold, and that the 90 out of 180-day access rule was having dire consequences and seeing many artists and crew either not hired or sent home from tour.The centre-piece of the hearing came from drummer Steve Barney, who found himself unemployed as a result of the new rule that UK citizens can only stay in the Schengen area for a maximum of 90 days in every 180 days without a special visa.

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