Music Week has announced this year’s Roll Of Honour, in association with TikTok, for our Women In Music Awards 2021.
There are 14 names on this year’s list, drawn from all sectors of the music industry and all with tremendous achievements to celebrate. They join the pantheon of previous honorees, including some of the biggest names in the business, from Emma Banks and Sarah Stennett to Kanya King, Rebecca Allen and Stacey Tang, that have been selected since the awards began in 2014.
In the run-up to the ceremony at the Park Lane Hilton on October 22, here's a chance to learn more about this year's Roll Of Honour inductees. Today, we're introducing Beverley Whitrick, strategic director of Music Venue Trust...
Beverley is currently the strategic director of Music Venue Trust, a charity created in 2014 to protect, secure, and improve the UK’s vital Grassroots Music Venues (GMVs).
In studying 3D design, Beverley not only learnt how to hone her problem-solving and presentation skills, but she also realised early on that working with creative people was more important to her than the process of creating things herself. This led Beverley to start her career in Arts Development and Arts Management.
This career then took a backseat after Beverley became the mother of twins and moved abroad; learning a new language and a new culture occupied most of her time for a few years. Being involved in arts projects on a consultancy level however never stopped and, as her daughters grew, Beverley built her work back up, gradually moving from multi-artform projects into music-specific work. This included routing Spanish tours for artists and managing a Latin Alternative DJ Agency.
Beverley’s second career really began with the development of the concept of Music Venue Trust (MVT), coining the term Grassroots Music Venues (GMVs), which is now used internationally. This project presented an opportunity for Beverley to combine her existing skills and experience with learning more about the UK music industry. She was for a long time the only full-time member of staff, running the charity, developing the Music Venues Alliance (an association of GMVs with now over 900 members), and producing the annual national networking event Venues Day.
During the pandemic, MVT took on a team of coordinators across the country to help fight for the survival of GMVs, expanding the team from five to 20. Managing such a rapid expansion brought enormous challenges, but to this date only a handful of venues have been lost. Through the Save Our Venues campaign, MVT raised over £5 million to support its work and enable it to issue small grants to venues most in need. In addition to this, the charity’s work with governments and funding bodies leverages over £120 million into the GMV sector. This represents a huge step forward for the recognition of GMVs as important cultural, social, and economic hubs, and shows positive progression for the research and development department of the UK Music Industry.
As strategic director, Beverley is now working on developing a more sustainable structure for MVT’s mission ahead. The core team consists of five women and one man, MVT’s founder and CEO. Championing women in the sector, and encouraging them to be speakers at events, remains incredibly important within the MVT. Just as MVT aims to assist young women to develop in the industry, it also continues to recognise and raise awareness around the amazing work being done by older women whose contribution is often unsung.
The Women In Music awards, sponsored by YouTube Music, comprises the Roll Of Honour and an additional 12 categories, including the all-new Entrepreneur Award which recognises a woman who has been the driving force in founding and/or building a business, displaying considerable innovation and success.
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