Manifesto for Music

UK Music shares 'Manifesto for Music' and warns of 'lost generation' of musical talent

The blueprint urges the next Government to develop 'a comprehensive, medium to long-term music strategy for growth'.

Sam Moore
  • By Sam Harteam Moore
  • 12 Sep 2023
  • min read

UK Music has published its Manifesto for Music, in which it calls on the next UK Government to avert the risk of a 'lost generation' of musical talent.

The organisation, which serves as the collective voice of the UK music industry, has set out a five-point plan for political parties ahead of next year's anticipated General Election, calling for swift action to be taken.

The manifesto urges the next Government to develop 'a comprehensive, medium to long-term music strategy for growth', spearheaded by five 'key policies':

  • Invest millions more in music education and recruit and train 'an army of new music teachers'.
  • Ensure AI supports human artistry through strong copyright standards, clear labelling and record-keeping requirements, and contains protections for the personality rights of music makers.
  • Fix the European touring crisis by securing a Cultural Touring Agreement with the EU to help cut red tape and soaring costs.
  • Introduce a tax credit to encourage new UK music production.
  • Secure a fair deal for music lovers by ending rip-off secondary ticketing practices.

A number of other recommendations, including proposals to boost exports, promote diversity and protect venues and studios, are also included in the Manifesto for Music, which you can read in full here.

Speaking about the manifesto, UK Music Interim Chief Executive Tom Kiehl said: 'We run a real risk of a lost generation of musical talent in the UK without urgent action to stem the decline in music education. The Government must put music education front and centre by recruiting and training an army of new music teachers to give young people the chance to learn to play an instrument and the potential of a rewarding career doing something they love.

'Unless we invest in our young people and give them the opportunity of musical education, there will be an existential threat to the talent pipeline on which the music industry relies. That will make us poorer as a nation both culturally and economically and cannot be allowed to happen.'

Tom added: 'We have a world-leading music industry in the UK. We are the world’s second largest music exporter, home to iconic festivals and venues, and boast some of the most well-known and sought-after musicians working today.

'However, there is increasing global competition from other countries. With strong backing from their governments, industries in Australia, Canada and South Korea are vying for a share of these expanded markets. Without action, the UK risks being overtaken by countries who are more proactive and ambitious in promoting their music sectors.

'This manifesto urges the Government and all political parties, to fully support a music strategy to supercharge growth and seize the opportunities of the future.'