Wednesday 05th August 2020,
Independent Venue Week

Panel 1: Covid Relief and Recovery

Wednesday 29th July 10.00am – 11.00am

Click here to set a calendar reminder for this session

With the whole grassroots live community put under immense strain as a result of Covid, we look at how the independent sector has coped.

Where have there been successful fundraising campaigns by venues and communities?

How have promoters and other independent and freelancers managed during lockdown?

What options are open for venues, promoters, artists and freelancers etc in terms of income, both grants and earnt, as we continue in and move out of lockdown?

How much will the grassroots live music scene changes in the medium and long terms both locally and for touring, nationally and internationally?



Known as a live music, creative arts and cultural hub in the heart of Surrey est. Sep 2006, 2015 saw the arrival of Originate Studios to The Boileroom. In all, the hub now houses over 26 creatives which include record labels, jewellers, tattoo artists, screen printers and it’s very own hackspace initiative. 2019 BR was one of the first music venues to receive ACE funding for its programming, the venue also annually will facilitate approx. 20 work experience, intern and engineer shadowing placements. Jan 2018 BBC6 Music’s Steve Lamacq hosted his drivetime show live from the venue for IVW. Winners at the Best Bar None awards for their policies and staff training, Frazer was named by WeGotTickets Indie50 in 2016; which celebrates the unsung heroes of the UK’s independent music scene. The Boileroom was the proud recipient of the ‘Spirit of The Scene’ award at the Music Week Awards 2018.


Harkirit Boparai is a venue manager, promoter and DJ, based at The Crescent Community Venue in York. The Crescent is a fully independent 250 cap converted working mens club, and Harkirit is a key part of the programming team; his night Ouroboros has a focus on jazz, hip hop, soul, afrobeat, psych, techno, disco and promotes in York and Leeds. He is a part of Jazz Promotion Network which undertakes advocacy for the UK’s jazz sector, and a regional Coordinator the NE for Music Venue Trust.


Maxie joined the PRS Foundation team in May 2016, delivering the communications strategy including work to champion a diverse range of music creators and make all PRS Foundation opportunities as accessible as possible. Maxie is from Norwich and is passionate about supporting underrepresented voices in music. She founded Gravy, a musical collective that provides a stepping stone for emerging artists, has a MMus in Sonic Arts, and currently plays drums in Graceland and Current Bond. Maxie has lectured on gender diversity in the arts and hosts LGBTQ+ club nights. She has worked for festivals, venues and talent development organizations in a range of genres, programmed hundreds of new music shows, and occasionally presents radio shows too.


Claire joined Arts Council England in March 2018 where she is responsible for the development of national strategy and policy for music in England, to date including the launch of a new £1.5 million fund for the grassroots live music sector and a major research study into diversity in classical music. Originally a Baroque violinist who performed with the UK’s leading period instrument ensembles, prior to joining Arts Council she oversaw the musical education of 1,000 students from pre-college to doctoral level as Director of Music at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Known internationally as a passionate advocate for innovation and inclusion in music, Claire’s current focus is supporting the sector as it emerges into the post-Covid-19 world.


The Leadmill, a multi use venue, should be celebrating it’s 40th birthday this year with a whole host of exciting programming. Not just four walls, The Leadmill is usually alive with a collection of live music, comedy, club nights, drag and film, and has been an integral part of Sheffield’s creative economy, programming shows across the city from 100 capacity up to 8000 on Don Valley Bowl. I’ve been part of the booking team at The Leadmill for over 10 years, taking up the post of senior booker and assistant general manager in 2016.