Edinburgh’s city leaders have promised to take action following research which has shown that restrictions on music in the city may affect income to businesses.

The report by The Music Venues Trust (MVT) has recommended that new policies are put in place following the survey which found that almost half of the city’s musicians had suffered problems over noise restrictions in the past year. 42% of venues had also hit problems of some sort, thanks to Edinburgh’s rule that live music must be “inaudible” in any home close to a venue – even if the pub or club was already in situ before the complainant arrived.

However, following the study’s finding that the city’s music scene was worth £40 million to the economy, and that the average amount spent by a music fan in the city is £1120 a year, the council may have had a change of heart.

The proposed change would, rather than acting on a single complaint, instead see council officers having to prove music was causing a persistent “nuisance”.

Edinburgh’s council claims that only 64 formal complaints were made between April 2014 and June of this year, but the survey by Edinburgh Live Music Census reported that one in three complaints to the council led to a venue canceling its live music programme completely.

A council spokesperson said: “There has definitely been an issue over amplified music in Edinburgh. There’s no point in the council saying that there hasn’t.
“The inaudibility clause has been policy for 10 years, but there’s enough of a case to look at it again. We can’t just hide behind it.”