June 30th 2023

Our successful Sefton consultation event

Liverpool City Region Music Board recently hosted its second ‘Let the Music Play’ consultation event in Sefton. The event, which took place at Lock and Quay in Bootle, garnered significant attendance and provided a platform for music professionals, artists, and individuals working in the music sector to voice their perspectives on local opportunities and challenges.

The Music Board acknowledges the importance of each borough within the city region and their unique contributions to the music sector. As part of their commitment to inclusive representation, similar consultation events are planned across all six Liverpool City Region boroughs. The forthcoming events will be held on 11th July in Wirral and 26th July in Liverpool.

The event was led by members of the LCR Music Board, including Chair of the Board and Chief Executive of the Royal Philharmonic, Michael Eakin, Paul Gallagher, Heritage Consultant for music and popular culture, Kevin McManus, Head of Liverpool UNESCO Music City, and researchers from The University of Liverpool, Grace Goodwin and Richard Anderson.

Expressing her enthusiasm for hosting the consultation event, Liz Bromilow, Venue Manager at Lock and Quay, said: “We were delighted to host this event. We want to celebrate the talent we have across Sefton and ensure that our voices are heard. It’s important for local artists and professionals to understand what the Music board is doing behind the scenes and how they want to support us. All local music professionals should engage with the Board and list themselves on the Board’s directory. I’m excited to hear their future plans for the city region.”

In addition to highlighting ongoing initiatives like the Venues Map, the event fostered open dialogues between attendees and the Music Board members. Participants had the opportunity to ask questions, voice concerns, and seek valuable advice from industry experts.

The insights gathered during the consultation were meticulously documented by the Music Board. These inputs will play a pivotal role in shaping their future plans and strategies, ensuring the sustainable development of the local music industry in Sefton and the wider Liverpool City Region.

Several key themes emerged from the discussions, shedding light on the current state of the music sector in Sefton:

  1. Vibrant grassroots scene: Sefton boasts a strong selection of venues that support and showcase emerging talent.
  2. Need for larger venues: Participants expressed a desire for larger capacity venues in Sefton to accommodate live performances and attract larger audiences.
  3. Media promotion: Concerns were raised about the lack of promotion and support from local media outlets, such as the Liverpool Echo.
  4. Retaining local talent: Efforts are needed to create more career opportunities in Sefton, reducing the outflow of talent to other regions for career progression.
  5. Talent development and education: Greater investment in training programs and work experience opportunities is essential to nurture the next generation of music professionals. Educators should also be better equipped to guide students towards diverse careers within the music sector.
  6. Recognition of local businesses: Participants emphasised the need for increased promotion and recognition of smaller local businesses, including production and recording studios, to foster a thriving music ecosystem.
  7. Collaboration and support: The establishment of a music hub initiative, supported by SIF, aims to showcase career opportunities in the music sector.
  8. Creative course reinstatement: Concerns were raised about the previous cuts to creative courses at Hugh Baird, with a call for their reinstatement.
  9. Enhanced event guidance: Suggestions were made for the creation of a dedicated “what’s on guide” for Sefton, facilitating better access to local music events.
  10. Economic significance: The music sector plays a crucial role in driving Sefton’s visitor economy, contributing to its overall vibrancy.