Venues playing background music experienced a fee hike of between 200 and 400 per cent in 2005 when Phonographic Performance Limited, which sets, administers and collects the fees, decided to limit the Copyright Tribunal’s jurisdiction to broadcast music only and have a separate Tribunal for non-broadcast music.
The British Hospitality Association and the British Beer and Pub Association immediately launched an appeal against the decision which the judge overseeing the case at the High Court today said was "inconvenient, cumbersome, expensive, and involve a waste of judicial and public resources".
BBPA chief executive Rob Hayward said the move was a "victory for common sense. "We now look forward to going back to the Copyright Tribunal, where we will do our utmost to secure a reduction in the fees which will give much needed financial relief to those licensees who are currently paying PPL well over the odds for music in their pubs,” he said.
BHA chief executive Bob Cotton (pictured) added: “We are more than pleased to have been able to deliver this result for our members, which raises the real prospect of reverting the charges for the playing of background music to a much more sensible and sustainable level.”
The industry has paid an estimated £12m more in fees since the new ones were introduced in 2005.