May 10, 2024 2 min read

Music Venue Properties announces purchase of The Ferret in Preston

A second venue has been acquired by Music Venue Properties, the charitable community benefit society set up as part of Music Venue Trust’s Own Our Venues initiative. It means The Ferret in Preston will now have a landlord that exists to support local grassroots music communities

Music Venue Properties announces purchase of The Ferret in Preston

Music Venue Properties - the entity set up by the Music Venue Trust as part of its Own Our Venues initiative - has acquired its second venue, The Ferret in Preston. It means the venue’s operators will now have a landlord whose mission is to support local grassroots music communities.

“This is a monumental moment for The Ferret”, says the venue's Director and Programme Manager Matt Fawbert. “We’re extremely pleased to be able to say that our venue is now safe and secure for years to come. To have a landlord that is dedicated to live music and supporting grassroots music venues gives us the security and confidence to not only continue delivering great live music to the people of Preston, but also to invest even more in grassroots music and culture and create something very exciting in our city”. 

The Music Venue Trust launched its Own Our Venues initiative in May 2022, having recognised that a key challenge for many grassroots venues is dealing with the insecurity that stems from being a tenant in a building with a landlord that has its own commercial priorities. 

MVP was established as a charitable community benefit society as part of the Own Own Venues scheme, with people and companies then encouraged to invest in that entity so that it could buy the freeholds of a network of grassroots music venues. It then acquired its first venue, The Snug in Atherton, last October. 

Its second purchase provides a particularly good case study as to why something like MVP is so beneficial. “Just over two years ago The Ferret team found out their building was up for sale when a sign was mounted on the front of the building”, MVP's Matthew Otridge explains. “But today they can look forward to working with a landlord who will support its ambition to bring music to its local community”.

Welcoming the second venue purchase, MVT CEO Mark Davyd says, “This second purchase by Music Venue Properties is further demonstration that, when the music community comes together around a great idea, we can deliver real positive change to the UK's grassroots music venue sector”. 

“The Ferret is the second venue removed from the commercial marketplace under the Own Our Venues scheme”, he adds. “It is now able to make long term plans for its future, and the future of live music in Preston, as a result of a new cultural lease that provides it with permanently protected status. We have already seen the huge difference this has made for the Snug in Atherton, and we want to see this project rolled out to many more venues across the country”.

The news of MVP’s second venue purchase comes a day before Parliament's Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee is due to publish its report on grassroots music venues, following an inquiry that included the recent hearing where MVT were among those to present

We'll be dissecting what that report says on this week's Setlist podcast, which will go live over the weekend.  

Great! You’ve successfully signed up.
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
You've successfully subscribed to CMU.
Your link has expired.
Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.
Success! Your billing info has been updated.
Your billing was not updated.
Privacy Policy