Music Licence

Ever walked through a shopping centre or pushed your trolley down the isle of a retail store and hummed to the music playing on the public speakers? That music currently playing is a result of the owner of the business obtaining a Music Licence. To legally to be able to play recorded music in public or on a business premises in the UK you will need a Music Licence.


Music Licence



TIME TO GET LICENCED Times can vary depending on type of venue

Submit Music Licence application to PPL PRS Ltd

Online application -
Telephone application - 0800 0720 808
Get Licenced

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What is a Music Licence?

For many businesses, music can be considered an important part of their service offering, used to help deliver a stand out experience for customers and visitors.


We make getting your music licence a simple, stress-free process 


The right choice of music has the potential to improve the atmosphere, lift the mood and help draw people in store or into restaurants, bars and venues. When music is performed and played in public, whether that be shops, restaurants or any other type of public venue, a Music Licence is required.


Important - If you play music in public or a business premises you are infringing copyright laws. If you play live or recorded music in public without a licence you could be sued for damages and potentially face serving prison time.


How to apply for a Music Licence

The UK's two music licensing organisations are PPL (Phonographic Performance Limited) and PRS (Performing Right Society for Music).


Previously, businesses and organisations had to obtain separate music licences from PPL and PRS for Music. The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 states you need to get permission from the copyright holder to ‘perform’ music in public.


PPL and PRS have combined their services together to form PPL PRS Ltd. The Music Licence grants permission to perform music in public.


To apply for a Music Licence, applicants will need to apply via PPL PRS Ltd


How much does a Music Licence cost?

The cost of a Music Licence depends on a number of factors including your type of venue and how you use music in your day-to-day operations. There a different cost to a Cinema playing background music in the foyer, to a Coffee shop playing music the whole day as customers drink beverages for example.


The cost of a Music Licence is also based as to whether the music will be used for background purposes or specially featured entertainment.


To find out more about how costs are calculated and how much a Music Licence will cost for your venue, please visit PPL PRS Ltd


If music is ever played on your premises for customers or staff; for example, through radio, TV, CD, MP3 or computer speakers, or at live events, this is considered a ‘public performance’. A public performance can be anywhere from a shopping centre to a restaurant.
PPL PRS Ltd is joint venture between the PPL and PRS for Music that covers both licences to form one licence. This licence is the Music Licence.
Purchasing music either digitally on a CD or any other means permits the buyer to listen to it at home for their personal use. However, if this music is played outside the home as a public performance whether that be a bar, restaurant or any other type of venue, then a Music Licence will be required.
Yes. If you are playing the radio in your business or organisation, you will still need to hold a Music Licence. A Music Licence allows you to legally play music for employees or customers in your business or organisation via a radio.
Using a mobile phone to play music in public is the same as playing it through a device such as an iPod, MP3 player or digital radio. If you are playing music in your business or organisation using a mobile phone, then you will be required to obtain a Music Licence.
There are certain circumstances under which you will not need to obtain a Music Licence to use copyright music in your business. This can include royalty free music and playing original music.

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