The UK’s world-famous live music industry had rarely engaged with Government – it had never really needed to. But, in a time of crisis, we used the power and creativity of the industry to win political support and £1.57 billion for the industry.

During COVID the UK’s world-famous live music sector needed government, the media, and the public to understand that – without support – it could disappear. They needed to rapidly reach a political audience – DCMS, No10, the Treasury, Cabinet Office. But the only sure-fire way of doing that would require mobilising huge numbers of the public – mostly music fans – to show the weight of support for the industry. Blakeney’s campaign was mobilised in just five days and had a huge impact. A letter to Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, was signed by The Rolling Stones, Cher, Paul McCartney, Dua Lipa, Coldplay, Little Mix, Lionel Richie, P!nk and 1,500 other musicians. A massive media campaign gained coverage in every UK paper, every broadcast outlet, and in 83 countries worldwide. Jools Holland, Beverley Knight, Ben Lovett, Emma Banks, KT Tunstall, Simone Butler (Primal Scream), David Gray, and Paul Weller all appeared on TV and radio.

The #LetTheMusicPlay logo was projected onto venues across the country, and artists and fans were asked to post a photo on social media of the last gig they played or saw with the hashtag #LetTheMusicPlay.

The social campaign achieved hundreds of millions of social media hits, trending at #1 globally on Twitter for 3 hours, and trending at #1 in the UK all day. A £1.57bn financial package for the cultural sector was announced the following week. Not only that, the announcement was brought forward, and the amount significantly increased to include live music, following Blakeney’s campaign.

The campaign was delivered at rapid pace, with every single element of the campaign planned, designed, created and then executed within the space of a week. Our powerful and constructive approach to campaigning led to the announcement of the largest one-off injection of cash into the live music industry by any UK Government ever.

The campaign was strategic, targeted and creative. Its results created immediate policy change alongside the announcement of a package of financial support that will result in thousands of people keeping their jobs and businesses being able to survive.

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““Blakeney were critical to the success of our #LetTheMusicPlay campaign. The success of the campaign was evident in an unprecedented level of support being rapidly announced for our industry"”

Greg Parmley, Chair, LIVE and Chair of UK Live Music Group