PPL grants £100,000 to Stagehand COVID-19 Crew Relief Fund

Stagehand, a charity designed to support those who work in the live events industry, has been granted £100,000 by music licensing company PPL to boost its new COVID-19 Crew Relief Fund.

The fund was launched by Stagehand Trustees in September 2020 to support crew, technicians and live events industry workers whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Open from mid-October, the fund will help those struggling to meet the cost of basic living.

The PPL works to ensure that recorded music creators are fairly paid for their work, licensing recorded music when it is played in public or broadcast on the radio or TV in the UK. It then distributes fees to the performers and recording rightsholders its represents.

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Commenting on the grant, Stagehand chair of trustees, Mike Lowe, commented: “We are extremely thankful to PPL for coming on board so generously at the beginning of our campaign. As a sector-specific charity, we’ve already seen devastating effects suffered by some of our workforce caused by the lack of work and financial support. The relief of having rent paid and mouths fed will no doubt ease the undoubted mental anguish caused by the pandemic.”

Peter Leathem, PPL CEO, added: “The live events sector has been one of the communities hardest hit by the pandemic and so we welcome the opportunity to be able to provide this support. This funding adds to the contributions we have made to hardship funds for musicians, freelancers and venues – all of which are part of the music ecosystem. We need to safeguard the jobs and livelihoods of crew so that they are there when our members get back out on the road post-COVID to do what they love most – performing. This is a much-needed initiative from Stagehand and we are pleased to be able to be part of it.”