Musicians from across the UK have already lost an estimated £13.9m as a direct result of coronavirus, a new survey has claimed.
The Musicians’ Union, which boasts over 32,000 members, surveyed some 4,100 members – with ninety percent of respondents confirming their income had already been affected.
Speaking to The Guardian, MU general secretary Horace Trubridge outlined a new hardship fund that will provide grants of £200 to out-of-work musicians.
He explained: “We hope this fund goes some way to providing a small amount of relief to our members, but we urgently need the government to provide clarity on what wider support will be available, and we call on the record industry to play its part, too.”
Last week, the Federation of Entertainment Unions, which comprises the Musicians’ Union, Prospect, Equity, the National Union of Journalists and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain, also called on the government “to introduce an income guarantee for freelance and self-employed workers for the duration of the Covid-19 outbreak.”
The Music Venue Trust has also called on the UK government to cancel the Festival Of Britain and use the funding to secure the future of Britain’s grassroots culture amid the coronavirus crisis.
In an open letter and new petition, the Music Venue Trust called upon the government to immediately announce legal measures to temporarily close venues amid the coronavirus outbreak, cancel their planned Festival of Britain in 2022, and reallocate that money to fund arts spaces through the difficult period.