Live event production industry welfare and benevolent fund Stagehand has received a £100,000 donation from UK music licencing company PPL to boost its new Covid-19 Crew Relief Fund.

Launched by Stagehand Trustees in September 2020, the fund was deemed a ‘necessary move’ by the charity as a means to support crew, technicians and live events industry workers that have fallen through the cracks in Government aid. Open from mid-October, the fund will help those struggling to meet the cost of basic living.

PPL CEO, Peter LeathemEstablished in 1934, PPL (Phonographic Performance Limited) exists to help ensure that those who invest their time, talent and money to make recorded music, are fairly paid for their work. As the UK’s music licensing company for over 115,000 performers and recording rightsholders, PPL license recorded music when it is played in public or broadcast on the radio or TV in the UK and then distribute fees to the performers and recording rightsholders its represents.

PPL’s recognition and support for the live music sector’s crew during the pandemic has been met with huge gratitude from all Stagehand Trustees.

‘We are extremely thankful to PPL for coming onboard so generously at the beginning of our campaign,’ says Chair of Trustees, Mike Lowe. ‘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.’

‘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,’ adds PPL Chief Executive Officer, Peter Leathem. ‘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.’

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