Sheffield pub’s ban over Red Red Wine

Barry's Bar, London Road, Sheffield.
Barry's Bar, London Road, Sheffield.

A pub proprieter has been banned from playing copyrighted music after his premises were found not to have the right licence in place.

An inspector visited Barry’s Bar on London Road in Sheffield and heard songs including Red Red Wine by UB40 and Natural Mystic by Bob Marley being played with no Phonographic Performance Ltd licence in place.

The organisation PPL licenses the use of music on behalf of record companies and performers – and High Court judge Mr Justice David Richards imposed the sound of silence on Barrington Spence trading at Barry’s Bar after inspectors said he did not hold a licence.

But Mr Spence told The Star he had owned a PRS for Music licence, which covers the use of compositions or lyrics on behalf of songwriters, composers and music publishers, for years. He also said he never received a letter to go to court.

“I have got a music licence for the pub but I got a letter from a place called PPL wanting £900 – I’d never heard of this company before. I’ve got a music licence from PRS, I thought I was covered. That’s covered me for the last 14 years.

“I said if it’s true and they are entitled to the money I will pay, but monthly.

“It’s confusing having two licences.”

Mr Spence was ordered to pay £1,807 in legal costs within 14 days.

The High Court heard a PPL inspector visited Barry’s Bar last September 28.

The High Court also imposed a ban on another pub, The Roland Arms in Aston, after inspectors visited last August and found proprietor Charles Dowling playing music without a PPL licence.

Mr Dowling, who was ordered to pay £1,787 in legal costs, is no longer the proprieter after leaving in November.

New management has taken over and said that the pub does have a PPL licence.