The proposed changes to the current charitable statutory exemptions for the public performance of recorded and broadcast music will apply to music used in divine worship by the Church of England or places of worship as certified. However, as part of this process, Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL), the organisation who license the public performance and broadcast of sound recordings, have agreed to implement a voluntary exemption for the use of broadcast and recorded music not only as part of divine worship anywhere but also for all religious ceremonies, civil ceremonies and civil partnership ceremonies; domestic/family occasions such as wedding parties; residential homes/hospices (not including staff areas); hospital wards and medical therapy.
The Government fully consulted on this matter, taking into account legal advice and an impact assessment prepared by Europe Economics, and negotiated a number of safeguards including a system of joint licensing, a code of practice and an independent complaints ombudsman. I have been involved at all key stages of the consultation and officials have kept me informed throughout. I considered this matter extensively before writing to the Economic Development Committee on 2 July 2009 for clearance. I received clearance for the publication of the Government response and the proposed repeal of the charitable exemptions on 24 July 2009.