March 27, 2009
Rosemary Greenway has been playing passages of opera and orchestral symphonies on the radio to the animals at her stables for more than 20 years, convinced that it helps soothe them.
While not all of her staff are quite as fond of the output of Classic FM as she is, Mrs Greenway, 62, kept the radio tuned to the station religiously while mucking out because of the apparent benefits.
But she has dropped the practice after being told that she must pay a £99 annual licence fee as it constitutes a "performance".
Because her stables, the Malthouse Equestrian Centre in Bushton, Wilts, employs more than two people it is treated in the same way as shops, bars and cafés which have to apply for a licence to play the radio.
She received a telephone call from the Performing Right Society – now officially known as PRS for Music – which was targeting stables as part of a drive to get commercial premises to pay for licences.
implication here is that there are people who are paid to think up new
types of businesses that they can soak for these fees. Wonderful. They
say that there will always be an England, and that may be true, but
it's pretty much gonna suck from here on out.
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