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Burnley pub landlord hit with £1,500 pub music bill
A PUB landlord in Burnley said he believes hard-hit licensees are being treated unfairly by music industry bosses after he was hit with a recording ban and a £1,500 legal bill.
An inspection was carried out by officials from Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL), the music royalties watchdog, at the Bay Horse, in Worsthorne, earlier this year.
Travis tracks ‘Driftwood’, ‘Turn’ and ‘Why Does It Always Rain On Me?’ were being played but the Church Square hostelry did not hold up-to-date PPL licences.
Mr Justice Sales, sitting at the High Court, has now placed a ban on the premises, preventing recorded music being played there, until the issue has been resolved.
And licensee Colin Paton is set to be receive a bill for court costs totalling £1,573, following the London hearing.
But Mr Paton told the Lancashire Telegraph: “The licensed trade is in decline so we can only pay what we can reasonably afford.
“You have got all of these licences from the Performing Rights Society, the PPL and the commercial costs for things like Sky Television going up.
“We were aware of that we were being investigated but I haven’t paid it because I believe pubs are being treated unfairly.
“We are paying fees to download this material and then they expect something else on top of that and it’s not right.”
The PRS licence is enforced on behalf of composers and music publishers but the PPL permit covers the use of the music and lyrics.
Bosses at the Rhythm Station in Rawtenstall were hit by similar action two years ago.
Hyndburn MP Graham Jones also launched an investigation last October after dozens of traders received PPL bills, some for as much as £600.
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