I spoke on Thursday in the Westminster Hall debate on musicians touring the EU post-Brexit. We are still some way off visa-free travel in the EU despite tireless campaigning from within the industry, cross-party support, and a willingness to arrange a deal on the EU’s part. It’s clear that for the Government – which has done little to help – hard borders are more important than the UK’s cultural contribution.
I’ve included a clip of my speech here in which I focus on visas, but this issue is just part of the mountain of bureaucracy faced by performers wanting to tour. I also spoke about cabotage (the restrictive rules on UK trucks), costly carnets, and merchandise (held up at customs).
You can view the full speech here (at 15:34:30)
Covid has stunted opportunity for the next generation of musicians, but we should now be eagerly anticipating an explosion of talent, of young artists who honed their craft during lockdown…We need the Government to help get the music sector on its feet and support EU touring.