Mayors of the North Unite with Sector at NTIA Night Time Economy Summit to Call for Industry Wide VAT Cut in Spring Budget

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The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) successfully hosted its third Night Time Economy Summit at the iconic Freight Island in Manchester on 8th and 9th of February. The two day event featured over 200 speakers and brought together a diverse range of industry leaders, experts, and visionaries to explore and celebrate the significance of the Night Time Economy.

As a beacon of innovation, the summit offered a multifaceted experience across four stages, with insights from government officials across the UK and experts worldwide for unparalleled international cooperation and knowledge exchange.  The Main Stage featured a convergence of leaders from major cities, governance bodies, central government, and global night time economy experts, with Stage 2 presented by Defected Records exploring crucial aspects of the electronic music industry and current trends. Stage 3 was hosted by VibeLab and The Fair and Stage 4 focused on Advocacy, Accessibility, Diversity, Inclusion, and Sustainability. In addition, this year the NTIA invited academics from across Europe to present academic research on a range of subjects in the Workshop area.

Day One kicked off with the shesaid.so breakfast featuring a welcome address from Sacha Lord (NTE Advisor GMCA) the hugely inspiring Figen Murray (Martyns Law) and Nina Kehagia (shesaid.so), followed by a momentous occasion as the Mayors of the North and West Midlands, Andy Burnham Mayor of Greater Manchester, Tracy Brabin Mayor of East Yorkshire, Andy Street Mayor of West Midlands & Steve Rotherham Mayor of Liverpool City Region came together to discuss the pivotal role of the Night Time Economy in their regions. This unique collaboration highlighted the growing recognition of the sector’s importance in driving economic growth, fostering creativity, and enhancing the overall quality of life.

During the discussion led by Andy Burnham, all the Metro Mayors got behind the campaign calling on the Government to reduce VAT. “This would save businesses and save jobs’ comments Sacha Lord. “Since the campaign started, this is the first time we have had heavy weight politicians get behind us.”

The Under Secretary of State & Minister for Small Medium Enterprise businesses, Kevin Hollinrake through recorded video message addressed considerations and initiatives to enhance and develop the night time industries in the future in the “Darkest Before the Dawn” NTIA Manifesto alongside Philip Kolvin KC.  Author of ‘Darkest Before the Dawn’ Philip Kolvin KC said: “The night time economy is a key part of UK culture, and so should sit within the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, with a minister in charge of a national strategy to support the industry. This would be a small step for the government, but a giant leap for the industry, so we were thrilled to hear Andy Burnham and his fellow Metro Mayors from the North and West Midlands endorse our idea. We now call on all political parties to pledge this in their own manifestos.”

Other highlights included exclusive keynote interviews with Keith Reilly, the founder of Fabric, the incredible Gok Wan and discussions on Removing Barriers To Culture featuring Suzanne Bull MBE (Attitude is Everything), ‘Mental Health within the Music Industry’ and ‘The Move Towards Sustainability Within The Night Time Economy’. 

On Day Two, UK NTE Advisors Sacha Lord (NTE Advisor Manchester), Carly Heath (NTE Advisor Bristol) and Alex Claridge (NTE Advisor West Midlands) united to discuss the ‘Challenges and Solutions to UK Nightlife’ and UK Music CEO Tom Kiehl led the conversation on ‘A Manifesto of Music’ and how this year’s General Election can make a difference to the Night Time Economy alongside Jeff Smith MP, Luke Fletcher MS (Plaid Cymru Wales), Councillor Richard Kilpatrick (Lib Dem) and Kate Lowes (Brighter Sounds).

Music education was also high on the agenda in the ‘Electronic Music And Education’ session with Chris Hawkins (DJ & Broadcaster), Chris Goss (Director Hospital Records), Lisa Lashes (Lisa Lashes School of Music), Miles Shackleton (Toolroom Records) and Sunil Sharpe (DJ & Lecturer) discussing the drive to double electronic music lessons in every secondary education setting.

Global perspectives were shared by providing valuable insights into the latest initiatives shaping the Night Time Economy landscape with expert representatives from Japan, Europe, Australia, United States and Colombia, Michael Rodrigues NSW 24hr Commissioner, Tak Umezawa Tokyo NTE Association, Ariel Palitz Former NY NTE Advisor and Camilo Ospina Guzman President of Asobares Colombia and VibeLab brought together leading voices on the global approaches to Nightlife including Robbe Van Bogaert Human Power & Speaker, Luis Manuel Garcia Mispireta, Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology, Richard Akingbehin Founder of Refuge Radio, Aoife McGuiness Neuroscientist, Multi Sensory Researcher, Professor Fiona Measham The Loop, Opposhain Ghosh, Andreina Seijas Kenneth Bailey and Anna Sclimm.

Other highlights included the Listen For Life Campaign with Specsavers and W.H.O session, DJ Paulette in conversation with Defected Records CEO Wez Saunders, Developing the Next Generation of Women Leaders in the Night Time Economy and discussions on Safeguarding, Inclusivity and gender equality in the private security Industry and exploring showtime highs and backstage lows with Tonic Rider. 

The Fair, one of the largest independent festival production agencies in the UK assembled some of the industry’s best minds to tackle the biggest challenges being faced across the sector right now – from rising costs to dealing with disasters and changing audience behaviours with a host of leading experts including;  Fran Martin (Head of Live FRUKT), Jay Taylor (Music Venues Trust), Lauren

Down (MD End of the Road Festival), Mike Grieve (MD Subclub), Rory Palmer Rowe (Mustard Media), Phoebe Roberts (Attitude is Everything).

In addition, the summit saw the launch of the Electronic Music Report 2024, generously supported by Amazon, providing an in-depth analysis of the industry’s latest successes and trends and the benchmark Night Time Economy Report 2024 was also unveiled, offering a comprehensive look at the current patterns and trends from 2023, providing invaluable insights into the future of the UK night time economy.

“The Night Time Economy Summit 2024 in Manchester was not just a gathering; it was a seismic shift in our industry’s trajectory. With over 1600 delegates and 200 speakers from around the globe, it was a testament to the power of unity, inspiration, and purpose. We witnessed a community coming together with unparalleled engagement, contribution, and a shared vision for the future of nightlife. As I reflect on the event, one quote stands out: ‘The conference where you kiss a cheek and hug rather than shaking hands.’ It encapsulates the warmth, connectivity, and commitment to positive change that permeated every moment of this extraordinary summit.” – Michael Kill, CEO of the Night Time Industries Association

The Night Time Economy Summit isn’t just an event; it’s a movement. A convergence of professionals, enthusiasts, and policymakers, it promises an unmatched platform for idea exchange, networking, and groundbreaking innovation.

Partners: VibeLab / Defected Records / We Are The Fair / Ticketmaster / NDML Insurance / Skiddle / Mustard Media / GigPig / Amazon Music

For more info: www.nighttimeeconomysummit.com

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