Sadiq Khan has declared a new ‘London Plan’, which aims to safeguard buildings of cultural significance, such as music venues. The scheme would place the liability and financial burden on developers to sufficiently soundproof residential homes near to venues. Noise complaints are a huge issue facing music venues and an ongoing nuisance for those who happen to live by pubs, clubs or gig places. Sites like Ministry of Sound, The Macbeth and Bussey Building are examples of some of London’s cultural spaces that have ran into problems with regards to property development in the past. However, with the proposed London Plan, the responsibility will lie less heavily on the owners of the venues, who used to be taxed with paying the bills for any noise reduction measures.
The London Mayor revealed plans for the capital with a particular emphasis on protecting and promoting its ‘creative spirit’. The programme includes moves to defend artist’s studio spaces, establish London as a 24-hour city, and encourage the development of new creative enterprise zones as well as protecting pubs from closure. ‘Culture’ attracts tourists, foreign investment, produces £42 billion per year and employs one in six people. So, along with historical value, cultural life plays a major part in sustaining London’s economy. Many feel as if London’s cultural scene has been under attack in the last decade. Statistics show that the capital has had a 25% reduction in pubs, 40% cut in music venues and 50% of night clubs.
From the outset, Sadiq Khan promised to reverse these tides and make London’s cultural scene thrive again for all Londoners. In a statement the mayor said that “London is the world leader for culture and creativity, and I’ve made it clear that protecting and growing this vibrant industry is one of my core priorities. It is growing at a faster rate than any other area of the economy, and I want to ensure that we create an environment where artists and creative’s can flourish”.
Article by Yohannes Lowe.