Almost half (47.4%) of musicians and music industry workers have had less work in the EU since January 2021 than they did before Brexit, while more than a quarter (27.8%) said that they have had no work at all in the EU, according to a survey.

The data was gathered from a survey of 400 music sector workers by the Independent Society of Musicians (ISM), which said the key findings of its report show that the restrictions introduced by the Trade and Cooperation Act (TCA) have had an enormously damaging effect on musicians’ ability to work in Europe.

Other findings of the report include more than a third (39%) of respondents have had to turn down work since 1 January 2021; 40% had had work cancelled in the same period. The most frequently cited expense was for visas and work permits (23%), followed by carnets (18%) and travel costs (14%).

ISM CEO Deborah Annetts said, “UK music is a great success story and we are rightly proud of it. The chancellor has correctly identified the creative industries as a potential growth market. However, as Paying The Price shows, the Government has been asleep on the job. It could have tackled many of the issues facing the music sector by itself and made Brexit work. It chose not to.

“This report provides a pathway to make Brexit work for music, and most of the recommendations would not require renegotiating the TCA.

“Brexit should never have meant that musicians cannot share their talent freely with our closest neighbours. This damages our country, our soft power and our precious creative talent pipeline. Music is worth £5.8 billion to the UK economy and the wider creative industries are worth £116 billion. We call on the Government to take action and make Brexit work for the wellbeing of musicians and our economy.”