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Industry bodies send final save 6 pleas to BBC Trust

By | Published on Tuesday 25 May 2010

UK Music, The Association Of Independent Music, the BPI and the Musician’s Union have all sent last minute pleas to the BBC Trust, asking for BBC 6music to be saved.

In a statement introducing a lengthy submission from UK Music, which includes a case study of the support 6music has given Moshi Moshi Records, and contributions from PR firm Anorak London and indie label Full Time Hobby Records, the trade body’s head Feargal Sharkey says: “It is vital that as an industry our voice is heard clearly, prominently and with determination. If nothing else, the BBC needs to understand that its current proposals for 6 are misinformed, inappropriate and, as an industry, not an option we are prepared to explore”.

Also contributing, in her role as an artist who released her first single through the aforementioned Moshi Moshi and who only received radio play on 6music at the start of her career, Florence ‘And The Machine’ Welch said: “6music gave me so much support at the start, and throughout my career, and I think the BBC would be failing to support young and upcoming talent if they were to take it off the air; no other radio station is as committed to playing new and alternative music, it would be a huge loss to the airwaves”.

Echoing Florence’s words, AIM’s Alison Wenham said in her own organisation’s submission: “It is right that the Association Of Independent Music – whose member companies are the finders and incubators of almost all new British music creators, performers and entrepreneurs – should stress the importance of 6music to independent music. 6music is a radio station which has quickly established itself as pivotal in this process of talent development. Readily available data clearly shows mainstream BBC music networks’ content is dominated by the major multinational entertainment companies – which suits these networks’ daytime audiences and competes with commercial music radio. Without 6music independent new music has no national radio station”.

Communicating major as well as indie label support for 6, BPI boss man Geoff Taylor said: “6music is exactly the kind of programming the licence fee is there to support – distinctive, high quality broadcasting that the commercial market would not provide. This is a chance for the Trust to stand up for the rights of the listener, and save a national treasure.  Signing its death warrant would not only let down music fans, it would fail generations of British artists who do not get played otherwise”.

The MU, meanwhile, broke its response down into twenty points of fairly balanced arguing, concluding: “[BBC management’s proposals] contains a lot that the MU can support in terms of an overall strategy and vision for the BBC, but we are concerned that some of the cuts and reductions in current services seem to be aimed at appeasing the commercial and political forces that want to see a smaller and weaker BBC that does not fulfil its high ambitions. We would urge the BBC not to fall into the trap of offering unnecessary sacrifices in order to satisfy those who will always criticise the BBC”.

The BBC Trust’s public consultation on the Corporation’s strategic review, which proposes the cutting of 6, that other incredibly important radio service the Asian Network, and a raft of other BBC services, closes today. You have until 5pm today to submit your views, which you can do here:

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