Get a licence to play live or recorded music

You usually need to get a licence if you:

  • play recorded music in public or at your business (including background music on a CD, radio or music channel)
  • stage live music events in public (for example, a concert or festival)
  • play live or recorded music in a theatre
  • use sound recordings in a theatrical production (including on-stage and off-stage effects)

The licence you need is called ‘TheMusicLicence’.

Get a licence from PPL PRS

You can also contact PPL PRS to check if you need a licence and get a quote.

Telephone: 0800 0720 808
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

You’re infringing copyright if you play live or recorded music in public without a licence. You could be sued for damages.

How much it costs

The cost of a licence varies. It’s based on things like:

  • the venue where you play the music
  • how the music is used

Who needs a licence

You usually need a licence to play live or recorded music in public - this includes in:

  • shops
  • offices and factories
  • hairdressers and beauty salons
  • cinemas and theatres
  • hotels and guesthouses
  • restaurants and cafes
  • pubs, bars and nightclubs
  • sports grounds and other sporting facilities (such as bowling alleys)
  • gyms and other health facilities
  • bingo halls and casinos
  • social clubs and members’ clubs
  • churches and halls
  • public transport

You do not need a licence to play royalty-free music.

Check if your business or organisation needs a licence on the PPL PRS website.

The way you get a licence to play live or recorded music has changed. You now need a single licence from PPL PRS, instead of separate licences from PRS for Music and PPL.

Other ways of getting a licence

If the music you want to play is not managed by PPL PRS, you may need a licence from another licensing body.