Music has been banned by order of London’s High Court at a top Swindon night spot.

The ban, along with a legal costs order of more than £2,000 was imposed on proprietor Robert Anderson of the Lava Lounge at 24-26 Fleet Street by one of the country’s top judges.

Mr Justice Marcus Smith was told that ‘music police’ heard copyrighted music was being played at the premises when the necessary music licences were not up to date. The judge was told that the inspector heard tracks including Paris, False Alarm and Case of the Ex during a visit on Saturday, May 20.

In the wake of the hearing Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) who brought the action warned: “Businesses that choose to play recorded music without a licence may face legal action and possibly hefty financial and other consequences as a result.”

Anderson, who was not present or represented at the court hearing, was banned from playing copyrighted recorded music not just at the Lava Lounge but at any premises he runs until he brings his PPL licence up to date.

And the judge ordered him to pay £2,077 in legal costs run up by PPL in taking the matter to court. The costs must be paid by October 19.

Failure to obey the order and turn any premises he runs into a music-free zone until all licence fees are brought up to date would be regarded as contempt of court.

Lawyers for PPL told the judge that solicitors had sent letters to the premises informing the proprietors of the nature and extent of PPL’s repertoire and the fact that the playing in public of sound recordings without PPL's licence or permission constitutes infringement of its copyright, and inviting them to acquire a licence.

Christine Geissmar, operations director for PPL, said: “There is an intrinsic value that recorded music adds to businesses, and this judgement acknowledges that the performers of the music and record companies should be fairly rewarded.

“Businesses that choose to play recorded music without a licence may face legal action and financial and other consequences as a result.

"Legal action is only ever sought as a last resort where a business continues to play music following repeated attempts from PPL to get the correct licensing in place.”