Plea to end the sound of silence

Tim Cooke, musician and song writer, who is giving the hospice his music to play until they can get a licence in place or gather more original music.
Tim Cooke, musician and song writer, who is giving the hospice his music to play until they can get a licence in place or gather more original music.

Volunteers at charity shops throughout the area want to turn their radios on.

But unfortunately they can’t because Wigan and Leigh Hospice bosses would have to find an extra £100 per shop for the licence which allows them to play music and being a charity they cannot justify the money.

The total amount across all 12 of its shops would jump from £960 a year to a massive £2,160 after the cost per licence rocketed from £80 a year to £180.

Janet Fletcher, shops co-ordinator, said: “The money we raise should be free to go straight back into patient care and should not be taken up by costs like this, which is why we took the decision that we couldn’t pay it.

“Twelve months ago we decided that it was worth the money because not only does it help create a nice environment for customers to shop in, it also gives our volunteers a boost.

“But when we were told we’d have to find the additional £100 per shop we had to turn all our radios off.”

Any business or charity which plays recorded music in public, such as a shop, is legally required to have a licence known as a PPL licence.

Now Janet is appealing to local artists or bands, who play original music, to get in touch if they would like their music to be played throughout the popular shops in return for free publicity.

One local musician/songwriter has already stepped forward - Tim Cooke is giving the hospice his music to play until they can get a licence in place or gather more original music.

But any artists who cover other musicians must have the relevant permissions to do so.

Any businesses or donors who willing to fund the cost of the licences would get their company name in the window of every hospice shop.

For more information call 01942 525566 and ask for the volunteer department.